magpie tales - the fish

Author: angiem, 05 24th, 2010

She was a fisherman’s daughter, the story goes, in love with a boy from the city, a boy who knew nothing about water nor fishing, but plenty about girls and money.  And she was beautiful, but more in a vulgar sort of way, with pouty lips and slanted eyes, and golden hair that reached down to her waist. Perhaps her looks were the reason why he broke her heart.  They seemed too insolent for civil company, too trailer trash.  They didn’t suggest stability, but merely a good time.

Her mother warned her about boys like him.  But girls don’t listen when they’re in love.  And if they do, they always end up thinking that they’ll change the course of the stars and align the universe their way.

They say she planned to seduce him one last time amongst the reeds, on her father’s fishing boat.  It was a moonless July night, hours before dawn when they rendezvoused.  She knew the water well and could maneuver the boat in the blackest of night or the foggiest of weather.  She wanted to show him that he needed her in his life, that he couldn’t exist without her, as she couldn’t exist without him.

The fisherman who found them claimed that it was the lack of fish in the water that led him to their bodies tangled in the reeds. It was an accident, they say, although the absence of the fish was indicative of something not quite right.

Forever after no one fished in the river again, deeming it cursed, nor swam in it, and the reeds instead of growing long and dense, shriveled up and died, and the fish disappeared.  And before a generation passed the water dried up completely, the only indication of what might have been an occasional report of a fish glimpsed, gasping for his breath.

This is a work of fiction. For more please visit Magpie Tales.


41 Responses to “magpie tales - the fish”

  1. Joanny Says:


    A dark night of the soul haunting tale one that reaches to the depths of the psyche. Well done.


    Thank you for the lovely comment on my post and if you are referring to the he fish sculpture it is located at SW Park and Salmon St. Portland.

  2. Beth Says:

    I like this - it leaves the reader wondering…

  3. Diane Says:

    Eerie. Your stories have a certain fairy tale quality, in that there is always a “trick” ending. Wonderfully done. :O)

  4. Kori Says:

    You have an incredible amount of talent, Angie; this is beautiful and eerie all at the same time.

  5. Mary Moon Says:

    These snippets leave me wanting more every time.

  6. Ange Says:

    hmmm - I’ve seen a few fish gasping for breath recently - that river wasn’t in France was it?

  7. French Fancy Says:

    Angie - you really ought to collate some of these into book form and send them off to a publisher - or at the very least an agent. They are really atmospheric.


  8. Jessica Says:

    What a sad story. :-(

  9. Jena Says:

    Again it’s been a week! Missed your writing. I hope you’ve been busy writing stories, cause that’s the only acceptable excuse for such a long absence.
    I know I sound redundant but I love your stories!!! This one gave me the chills.

  10. Ava Says:

    Seriously lady, when can I buy a book written by you?? Your writing and imagery is stunning!

  11. Kary Gonyer Says:

    Hi Angie…thanks for checking in on me and Teddy…so good to see you here today, my sweet friend…

    I haven’t been blogging much….just lazy, i guess….

    but so good to see you….

    sending you love,
    kary and teddy

  12. Lyn Says:

    Doomed from the start..just chills me..which is very good!!

  13. Tumblewords Says:

    Fascinating. It rings of truth.

  14. Make Do Style Says:

    Sorry have been so busy so am stopping by briefly to say hi and storing up your lovely posts to have a jolly good read xxx

  15. willow Says:

    Angie, you sure can spin a great tale!

  16. Victoria @ Hibiscus Bloem Says:

    Great writing Angie. Surely a publisher is hunting you down?

  17. caty Says:

    This was a great tale of love and tragedy. She loved him; he used her. (I have been victim to that myself) Did she get her revenge? Love the mysteriousness of the ending! Great Piece.

    And thanks for visiting and commenting on my magpie as well :)

  18. La Belette Rouge Says:

    What a mythical and magical tale!

  19. She Writes Says:

    I see a shift in your writing. I loved this tale, though I have always enjoyed the time spent here :).

  20. Ötli Says:

    A beautiful story ! We need to pay attention… because I think we are many to want to ” change the course of the stars and align the universe” our way.

  21. Christie Says:

    I’m always in awe of your talent with words. A fabulously eerie tale.

  22. deb @ talk at the table Says:

    so terribly tragic. You were able to grab me and make me feel exactly what you set out to. Good.

    now I need to go shake off the sorrow.

  23. Sabine Says:

    Beautiful story. I think I’m not the only one who stopped at ‘they’ll change the course of the stars and align the universe…’ Because isn’t that what many of us secretly dream of?

  24. Jill Kemerer Says:

    You write such lilting prose. It’s poetic.

  25. angiem Says:

    Thank you, dear friends.

    Ange, yes, the river is in France.

    Sabine, I know I dreamt of that, once upon a time.

  26. Englishvers Says:

    You write what others fail to see. The inner workings of love, the soul and man. Rising to hreatness;-)

  27. Englishvers Says:

    Rising to Greatness. Made an error above, silly me;-)

  28. Susan Says:

    Most excellent, A. Reminds me of a Greek or Roman myth (or Celtic). If I have a nightmare tonight, though, I know who to point the finger at. (What? Me take responsibility? Never!)

    I’ve been preoccupied with bodies of water (& the desert which is quite similar in many ways), tragic love, & myth the last year & so your tale was extra-captivating.


  29. julie Says:

    Dear Angie
    I agree with French Fancy.. you really should have your work published.. you have such a creative mind.. and one that often plays on the dark side.. which makes it all the more interesting… another great story Angie.. xxx Julie

  30. audrey Says:

    quite spooky, Angie. very nice. i love your detailed description as well, makes me feel like i’m in the shadows watching as all unfolds…

  31. Stephanie @ La Dolce Vita Says:

    Sweetie - you MUST find a publisher! You are one talented lady!

  32. Allegra Smith Says:

    Just lovely, like an old folk tale that travels through time.

  33. rochambeau Says:

    Good one. Sad, but good!
    Hi lovely~~
    Your a great weaver of tales~

  34. Francesca Says:

    How sad, what a sad way to exist together !

  35. Menina Says:

    ‘But girls don’t listen when they’re in love. And if they do, they always end up thinking that they’ll change the course of the stars and align the universe their way’

    So true, unfortunately!

    This story is so sad. Life breeds life. It is incredibly well written, very touching.

  36. Relyn Says:

    That is a powerful, powerful story. I love it! More!! Give us more.

  37. Elisa_Croatia Says:

    You seriously are one talented writer..I could picture the girl and boy under a dark sky alone with the stars…..You need to put a collection and publish them. what a great gift for your kids and generations to come. (plus I too would like a copy).

  38. Sarah Laurence Says:

    I like how you tell the story like a modern fable, but I’m a little confused by the plot: if he broke her heart and discarded her then how did she seduce him later?

  39. Cindy L. Says:

    You are such a wonderful storyteller … I will be reading you this summer, even though I am on a “break” from blogging, as I love your writing! Thanks for your sweet comments on my Blog as well. Keep writing, Angie!

  40. Bebe Says:

    It’s true. I love how you put it in a story form. Girls get their hearts broken and the boys who break their hearts keep coming back because for them it’s just physical. Why want commitment when we make it so easy. Great, great story. I love how you tell it.

  41. Holly L Says:

    LOVE this. You are amazing.

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