In Search of the Giant Squid in All the Wrong Waters: Week 33
Friday, August 8, 2014, 4:17pm
Today, I searched for the giant squid in Peanut Lake, which is shaped less like a peanut than a hazelnut, less like a hazelnut than a one-leaf clover, and less like a one-leaf clover than a tumor. For bait, I was going to use popcorn, but it was really good popcorn, so I ate it, and instead used spit-moistened crumbs of the brochure I found under the passenger seat—the one from Mother Featherlegs Prostitute Monument that I picked up a couple of years ago in Lusk, Wyoming, and had forgotten about. I cast with a crumb that bore the words, Deadwood Stage, pink granite slab, deep furrows and ruts, bawdy statuary, and ruffled pantalettes. It was a big crumb. I cast, and the sound it made when it hit the water was akin to that of a heart monitor blipping off. While I waited for the squid to take the bait, I prepared my next crumb, and read about the murderous Dangerous Dick Davis the Terrapin, who had a fetish for marrying silk and silver bullets. He would give the bullets voices, perform horrible puppet shows before drawing blood. Overhead, I swore I saw a raven flying backwards, and, at the bank, a grasshopper leap-frogging a turtle. Cat food, all, I thought. The basswood leaves clacked in the wind like castanets, and its trunk hummed with bees. I felt a nibble, and reeled in, and something had eaten the word, deep, and I wondered to what extent and remoteness I would take my desire to catch the larger-than-life, and how many pleasures I would have to sacrifice to do it. A squirrel dropped its nut. It hit the ground, and became the thing that killed the ant.