Speaking Water

I have heard that my language sounds like fish
swirling in water, with mouths that gape open
but make no sound of their own.
What sounds is the impact of water
against their bodies: a hollow throb on their gentle
scales. In the ocean, I am hard-pressed
to find fish that still breathe. I cannot accept this
as fact, so I keep searching for something.
Is this the sound of fish? I wonder, because
I have always been taught that fish
make no sound. All I know is the sound
my mother makes when puckering her lips
into the shape of a fish and the canyon
that forms across her cheeks. Do we speak fish?
I must wonder, because I do not
see fish anymore. Are they fewer in number,
or fewer in sight? There is an acrobat
in my mouth that speaks on my behalf,
careful not to offend the teeth.
I have spoken my language too many times
to think that she is silent. I have felt
her warm grip tugging at my lips, begging to have
my mouth. My tongue is water when I speak:
a tide rising and falling between teeth.