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black threads for lines

all bulks, from minnows to full-sized
                        slipped down to the common wash-
carp, the magic creatures swam, twink
                        room             too, unwonted silence
                                  Only the
electric light.
                heard puttering; about in the
                        Beside —
                        He plunged his face into a basin of
                and came to
black threads for lines, and micro

— Harrison Collins, “Erant Enim Piscatores” in The Atlantic Monthly (December 1921) : 814-818 (817) (google books), 817 (hathitrust)

a humorous sketch, hinging on wobbly mastery of English and Japanese (by students and instructor, respectively), evidently in Kyoto, and involving fishing for goldfish.

Harrison Collins, papers at UH-Mānoa, Manuscript-A1961-002
where the following biographical note:
Harrison Collins and Gregg M. Sinclair both graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1912 and moved to Japan to teach English. Collins remained in Japan for most of his life; return to the U.S. just before WWII broke out. Collins and Sinclair were close friends, and Sinclair was the executor of his estate.
Journals and Day Books, 1912-1951
Writings, 1920-1951

the second of two OCR cross-column confusions encountered in volume 128 of The Atlantic Monthly (1921), elaborated by subsequent erasures

22 April 2022