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Alligator Gar

by Larry D. Thomas

Your teeth are needles,
your scales bejeweled
with the hardness
and the shape
of diamonds.
In the dark bayou
defiled with debris
and the dead,
bloated bodies
of lesser fish,
so polluted
it’s dazzling
with the sheen
of gasoline,
you rise
to the surface,
your long body
as the arms
of a danseur,
and you descend,
spreading your gospel
in total silence
through the deep
Jerusalem of the gloom.

Larry D. Thomas is a member of the Texas Institute of Letters and served as the 2008 Texas Poet Laureate. He has published 23 print collections of poetry, the most recent of which is In a Field of Cotton: Mississippi River Delta Poems (Blue Horse Press, 2019). Aside from his previous appearances in Deep South Magazine, Thomas has also been featured in recent issues of Valley Voices: A Journal of Delta Studies, Green Hills Literary Lantern and elsewhere. He was the feature poet in the February 2021 issue of the Delta Poetry Review.

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