Academic journal article Anglican Theological Review

Peter's Fish

Academic journal article Anglican Theological Review

Peter's Fish

Article excerpt

"Go to the sea and drop a hook, and take the first fish that comes up. Open its mouth and you will find a coin worth twice the temple tax. Give that to them for me and for you. "

-Matthew 17:22-27

Having seen him step across the unsteady

surface in a storm; call reluctant catch

into luckless nets; satisfy a mass

with a pair of bony fish, Peter knew

that something greater than Jonah was there

and listened when this carpenter would speak

about the sea and everything that fills it.

Lining the hook, catching the fish was simple

enough-he'd been a fisherman himself

and knew by just the forceful tug he'd caught

a musht: a common fish in Galilee

with glistening browns and blues that called to mind

the dryness of the earth, the depth above.

He pushed against the gills to force its mouth,

the way he would to claim a hook, and looked

inside for what was prophesied. …

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