Poem by Jeffrey Thomson
Edited by Christopher Seid
Artwork by Rockwell Kent
“Poem Trying Not to Be a Nature Poem”
The whales are the color of the ocean
today, their backs rising like scissors
through canvas, scarred with white
the way the waves are scarred with crests,
and frigates cut the sky to pieces with
their elegant boredom. Elections rattle
around in the television like a funnel
of money. Acres of famine planted, and,
while you read this, hillsides freed from
their burden of rainforest. Wars. Plural.
Streets of people warming themselves
under effigies. Machetes and a pile of severed
hands. The serrated islands, the sedge full
of the chuckling bodies of resting gulls.
Sea stacks and caves of cold shadow.
I have nothing to say and I am saying it.
The whales move on, singing their
beseechings to the sea, frigates slice
emptiness out of the sky, and the ocean
goes on and on with its innumerable,
small and insignificant hands.