Monday, January 14, 2013

A Song for Sister Whale

Sister whale,
you begin your migration
along the rugged coast,
and I stand waiting
in the chill, late-winter dawn,
watching to see you passing by
on your ancient journey,
both of us caught
in the spell of a force
far greater than man's,
connected in the mystery
and the beauty
of the universal plan
that makes us sisters
under the skin,
that makes us kin.

Mystical swimmer
in the primal sea,
it's been your ocean
since the world began.
You have made your way
century upon century
from birthing grounds
to feeding grounds,
your babies by your side,
your steady progress
purposeful and true
through the perilous course
your corridor has become
since it became a corridor
man shares with you.

I have looked down
to see you from the air,
your body outlined
like a dozing giant
in the kelp,
and I have caught my breath
as,with a huge exhalation,
you surfaced right beside my boat,
with your wise, loving eye
seeing me clear,
looking like you wanted to offer
us bumbling humans help
to learn the ancient wisdom
you could share,
if only you could find
a way to speak,
and if only we could find a way
to hear.

Now they say you're dying
in massive numbers
in the hunt,
and I am weeping
as I hear the news
that your neighborhood,
a whale highway
at this time of year,
is full of boats with spears,
the ocean a red flood,
your ancient bodies
carved for sale
on decks slippery with your blood,
from swimming through the sea
in total trust,
because you have no choice
and swim you must.

My mind, after
the numbness and despair,
wants to check out, as
it hurts so much to care.

My heart is aching,
for what it's worth.
Should we put up a sign 
in the ocean:
Detour this earth?

I'd say I'm sorry
and I'm not the only one.
I own the guilt of
belonging to
my species.
All I can do is write my pain
into a poem.
I know your heart
holds sorrow too,
everywhere you roam,
for I can hear it
in your mournful song.
What are we doing to your home?
What are we doing to
our planetary home?

Sister whale,
swim fast, swim free.
Some of us know
that together we share
a common destiny.

Kids, this morning Paul Watson of the Sea Shepherd was interviewed on CBC. He has slipped  bail in Germany and has set sea to intercept four Japanese whaling ships whose aim is to kill 900 whales - nine hundred whales - for "scientific research".

Observation of these operations shows no research is being done. Hovering helicopters witness the whales being cut up and frozen for sale to restaurants and fish markets. In recent years, they have killed 20,000 whales.  No research papers have ever been released.

I cant take much more of this, kids. 

The Sea Shepherd Society vows Zero Tolerance of this massacre. They plan to position their boat across the loading bay of the ships.  "If they cant load the whales, they cant sell them,"  Paul says. "We have to talk to them in the only language they understand: profit and loss. I will abide by the injunction forbidding me to be closer than 450 meters from their fleet. But my crew is not affected by the injunction.

"Life in  the ocean is being diminished, from plankton to fish to the great whales. Without the ocean, we cant live. But there is a lack of government motivation to protect the whales, and a financial motivation to continue the hunt, to protect corporate interests," Paul said this morning. "The Sea Shepherd Society vows Zero Tolerance of the killing of these whales."

I adapted this poem from one I wrote years ago, during another whale crisis. I am too sick at heart to come up with a new one. I am linking this to Open Link at Real Toads. Thanks, kids, for reading.


  1. So very sad--so very sad---"if only we could hear"

  2. The first thre stanzas are full of Sherry magic, they have the power to make anyone look twicew and care. And, given the situation, the rest is necessary too. I like the suign in the ocean "detour this earth." "Swim Fast, Swim free."

  3. I really like this part:
    "through the perilous course
    your corridor has become
    since it became a corridor
    man shares with you"

    And the ending.

  4. I do so hope something can be done...this so so VERY sad, Sherry. Your poem is so relevant to the current situation.

  5. It's just terrible--the creatures so magnificent. I don't know why mankind thinks it's immune from extinction. Thanks for writing about this - so important to my mind too. Thanks. k.

  6. I'm balling. I didn't know this was happening still. A huge reason I don't watch news any more but that is not a solution turning a blind eye. It's just so painful and my heart hurts greatly to think of the loss of these amazing creatures. Thank you for your beautiful compassionate heart...this true and touching outreaching.

    in the spell of a force
    far greater than man's,
    connected in the mystery
    and the beauty
    of the universal plan
    that makes us sisters
    under the skin,
    that makes us kin"

    Yes. <3

  7. and if we cry out in our human voice., 'wail' if we must, for our sea kin, the 'whale'.

    We must all 'wail' and 'howl' , when we can.

    Gracias mi amiga

  8. What a travesty! You have me crying for the creatures of this beautiful world and because of the inhumanity of man. All should not be profit and loss..."the world is too much with us...getting and spending...". It truly is too much.

  9. The pull of profits and greed can never be stopped with soft means. If they are lured by money they should be made to pay back in large money terms. Substantial fines would reverse their adventure. Persuasion is not effective. Noble of you to bring this up Sherry!


  10. Sherry I had tears in my eyes after reading this... You feel so much with everything you write... so much with nature.

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  12. Tears flowed as I read this Sherry. My heart is broken. I feel so helpless. How do we combat the ignorance that leads people to think profit is better than life? We share one heart Sherry.

  13. This is so sad Sherry ~ What is happening with our world, we killing these beautiful animals ~

    Thanks so much for sharing this ~

  14. And you spread the word... this is the best way to combat many wrongs. We share information and act when we can. Your poem is a powerful plea, Sherry.

  15. Such sadness....shark fins, whaling, Blue fin, turtles....when does it stop. I have never seen a whale in the wild...would love to. I just wish people would open their eyes. Great tribute Sherry.

  16. Thank you Sherry for being a voice, for watching and paying attention. We will always more of you,


  17. Sometimes all we can do is write a poem and share our thoughts and feelings with others. Awareness will grow...enlightenment will spread...things will change. I love your strong and humane voice, Sherry!

  18. Thank you Sherry! I love your voice used in this form! YOUR awareness makes me see more clearly~
    Well done

  19. Thank you so much for bringing awareness to this...


I so appreciate you taking the time to read and comment.
Thank you so much. I will be over to see you soon!