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Puddle onto concrete and thrashing, weaker-weaker before subsiding to limp stillness. My heart grates inside my ribs. Funders, when and what to report, what the ethics committee will hand down.
But — A fluke, a crash and one eye opens. I am on my knees, cup its purple fins. I scoop more fluid, dirty girl but better than nothing. There is enough to curl-uncurl itself, liquid pulsing through gills.
Everything is skin to slime and slick between fingers. A thrill. And perhaps after all, a breath is a result. It and I are not failures.