What Rough Beast | Poem for November 14, 2017

Adam Zhou
Cause Célèbre

Children left naked in ponds, unattended.

Even when drank, black water leaves no shadows.

A cloth, a layer of skin, some threads sticking out.

Only fish can taste the flesh: sweet and raw.

Chests rise and collapse almost simultaneously.

Spry laughter, a dissonance caught in a loop.


Adam Zhou’s poetry has appeared in The Rising Phoenix Review and The Kill List Chronicles. In 2017, Zhou won a National Silver Medal for personal essay and memoir from the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards (presented by the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers), the longest-running and most prestigious recognition program in the United States for creative teens in grades 7–12. He is a sophomore at the International School Manila.

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