ishmael (Mark Roberts)

Verity La Heightened Talk

Ocean pool 2.1
coming at dawn
to swim in the ocean baths
they find a dead whale
half the size of the pool
floating like a cut puppet
fins & tail tugged
by waves breaking
over weathered concrete walls
 
one old swimmer who has come
to these  baths for years declares
“i’m not sharing my lane with that!”
 
there remains the discussion
of how to remove tons
of dead whale
without destroying the pool
 
*
 
before swimming pools
such a stranding
would trigger a celebration
that would last for weeks
food for everyone
huge fires on the beach
spears treated with whale blubber
bones broken up for tools and shelter.
 
*
 
now we wait for cranes
trucks
& chain saws
whale cut to truck size pieces
& dumped in landfill.