the first

Narcissus, "King Alfred" Daffodil
“Each evening, before the dive boat returns, I sit on the deck of the cantina, watch the sun fall into the ocean. Sometimes I see Pearl and her daughter, flashes of silver in the distance, and I raise my glass to them. They’re bottlenose, I learn from my fish book, related to the killer whale; their main enemy is the shark, the left-facing variety of course. I leaf through pictures of basket starfish, eagle rays, familiarize myself with the habits of the curious giant stinking vase sponge and memorize dive terms so that at dinner with the gang I don’t end up saying, “Narcosis, I’m all for that, why I plant at least two dozen each fall…” (From Bliss, by ‘me’, Room—31.1)

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