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The Fish

The Fish

by Elizabeth Bishop

Lines 56-60 Summary

Get out the microscope, because we’re going through this poem line-by-line.

Lines 56-57

A green line, frayed at the end
where he broke it, two heaver lines,

  • Just when you think Bishop has described the fishing lines enough, she tells us more. She even distinguishes between the older and heavier lines.
  • Also notice that the fish broke one of the lines. Another tough fish moment.
  • Green – more color!

Lines 58-60

and a fine black thread
still crimped form the strain and snap
when it broke and got away.

  • If the fishing line is still crimped, maybe the fish had a recent getaway.
  • Bishop's mention of the "strain and snap" offers more to the warrior fish image. It's like he's the Beowulf of fish.

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