Note: Phidias was a Greek sculptor whose statues were so realistic that they seemed to be alive. Porter's take on Phidias is amazingly self-referential; like the fish being described, the poem expands and takes on layers of meaning in the mind of the reader. In just 9 short words, Porter manages to invoke the ideas of life as art and art as life, the meaning of representation, the role of the viewer, even the effects of time... (Lest anyone think that I'm reading too much into what is actually a piece of nonsense, let me add that I thought of many of the above issues when I first read that poem; later (much later), I read a book of criticism which had Porter say the same things about this poem. So there. <g>) thomas.