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  • Writer's picturelperskie

Where did the whales go?

Whales once abounded like fish

close to the shore

swimming trustingly into this cove

where men swept them

into nets, never sailing out to sea

Oh the wealth that filled their nets

gushing into a gold era

when whales were plundered

for baleen and blubber

oil and winter light

teeth and bones engraved

with men’s stories

saved as legends


greed pushed the kindly giants

Into farblown oceans

where whales made routes through

roiling currents- ocean valleys

And bold crested wave hills

while wizened-skinned men chased after them

far and wide

until they became herded nomads

escaping from the trade that

valued and effaced them

hiding and gliding

navigating with calls and songs

under sonic moonlight

Invisible echolocation

banding and bonding

roaming the expanse of the world

no end to their ocean home

but, no place to rest

Today, seagulls commandeer the harbor

Where ships plow slowly toward

the wharf

docking quietly

gone are the seamen of aforetime

With ruddy wrinkles and ropey arms

Yet new seamen

are banding and bonding

raising spats from oyster specks

And tossing them into the cove

to grow humbly-clinging

to piles and piers

their ignoble humped backs

absorbing waste

creating a reserve of lime

each oyster

churning gallons of water

filtering phosphorus and brine

turning ocean water into primordial wine

Giving from inside out

the meekest of creatures

restore the harbor

returning the treasure of life

to the shores and the sea

And when should a whale return?


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