I arose before dawn.

Raced to my favorite fishing spot.

The shore by the Vineyard Haven bridge.

I cast from 5 to 6 a.m.

No fish.

But I did see the 6 a.m. ferry depart.

Not a great start.

I was joined by a fisherman

Really dressed to fish.

Every item of clothing matched head to toe.

Waders and khaki shirts blended well.

I am sure if need be he could

model for the L.L. catalogue.

He had a military bearing.

His casts were long and true.

Then entered upon the scene his opposite.

A fisherman chewing on a dangling cigar.

His shirt with the letters O.B.F.D.

I presume they mean the Oak Bluff Fire Department.

His casts were long and well placed.

Then came an unlikely pair

With just shorts and a Tee shirt.

We all fished until I tired.

No fish or strikes as yet.

I left the shore and stowed my rods atop the car.

I paused for a moment to reflect on my lack of luck.

The action began.

O.B.F.D. caught four or more.

The gentleman fisherman with all the proper gear and wear

caught and released several fish.

Also the unlikely pair caught at least two apiece.

I raced to get my rods down and join the group.

I cast in the same places as they.

No fish touched my lure.

I edged close to observe their lures.

The same as mine.

As O.B.F.D. went to leave he offered me a bluefish.

But I could not take what I had not caught.

Head bowed with the burden of defeat

I headed home.

What to do.

Call L.L. for a new outfit.

Chew a dangling cigar.

Or go more casual with a Tee shirt and shorts.

After breakfast I could not relax.

I raced back to cast my lures again.

Surely my luck would change.

I only had one fish on who broke free.

I surrendered to the fates of the sea.

It was a day of “No Fish for me.”

— A. Roger Clarke