Logo, MacQueen's Quinterly
Listed at Duotrope
MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 23: 28 April 2024
Poem: 197 words
By Rose Mary Boehm


Plankter, a word that’s hardly ever used. 
You’ll never find just one. Any organism 
living in the water column, says Wikipedia, 
and incapable of swimming 
against a current 
is a plankter. 
Food supply for fish and whales. 
Even sharks like them as appetizers. 

In the Big-Bang scheme of things, a human 
must appear quite small. Depending 
on your distance, and how powerful 
your binoculars are. 
30,000 feet is still not high enough. 
We are talking a couple of light years. 
At least. 
Do you see humans swim against the currents? 
They gather on this side of the current barrier. 
You spy some rapidly opening mouths. 

By plankton’s standard, jellyfish are giants. 
Still, they must stay put. 
But even the ones capable 
of independent movement, 
the errant knights, 
can’t do other than vertical. 
The “diel vertical migration.” 
Look it up. 
(Relatively) young and upwardly mobile. 
I heard that somewhere. 
Movement determined by the surrounding 
currents. Come shark, come eat. 

The current trends are all there is. Even 
fashionable currents in philosophy, economics, 
history and other legends. Thinking in general 
perhaps. But the delusion of independent movement 
remains complete. Delusion, illusion...
My fellow plankters, I honor you. 

Rose Mary Boehm
Issue 23 (April 2024)

is a German-born British national living and writing in Lima, Peru, and the author of two novels as well as eight poetry collections. Her poetry has been published widely in mostly US poetry reviews (online and print), and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. Her most recent collections are available on Amazon: Life Stuff (Kelsay Books, 2024), Do Oceans Have Underwater Borders? (Kelsay Books, July 2022), Whistling in the Dark (Cyberwit, July 2022), and Saudade (Kelsay Books, November 2022).

Author’s website: https://www.rose-mary-boehm-poet.com/

Copyright © 2019-2024 by MacQueen’s Quinterly and by those whose works appear here.
Logo and website designed and built by Clare MacQueen; copyrighted © 2019-2024.
⚡   Please report broken links to: MacQuinterly [at] gmail [dot] com   ⚡

At MacQ, we take your privacy seriously. We do not collect, sell, rent, or exchange your name and email address, or any other information about you, to third parties for marketing purposes. When you contact us, we will use your name and email address only in order to respond to your questions, comments, etc.