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Elizabeth Bishop uses vivid imagery in the poem “The Fish” to describe the setting and the fish. She describes the fish in detail using similes and metaphors. He is a huge old specimen whose “skin hung in strips like ancient wallpaper,” and “he was speckled with barnacle, fine rosettes of lime.” The author goes on to describe how difficult it is for the fish to breathe yet he does not fight as the narrator examines the catch. Finally, the angler notices the vestiges of past catch attempts entangled in the fish’s mouth. There is evidence that the fish was caught and released four previous times. At this point, the oil slick around the small rented boat appears to be a rainbow upon the water. The angler is overcome with the beauty of the situation, “rainbow, rainbow, rainbow,” and the tenacity of the fish. The angler releases the fish one more time.
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