Foot-long toothy fish teem in the water,
scratching my legs. An unknown bystander
does nothing to relieve my torment.

The day before: a trip to the co-op,
my first adventure in three months,
the trial run for my home-stitched mask.

I grab produce and protein and follow the arrows
on the floor. I ask for help to find polenta and tea,

then hurry down aisle 6 and forget 
the Lapsang souchong.

Were those fish calling me out 
for avoiding eye-contact?

Were those monsters my suppressed fears? 
The quest does not always equal the expectation.