The Whale in B minor

The sea only exists because
His long song sang it swollen
Full from the ice of comets
Melted on warm and restless stone.
All the sea is tenuous, blue,
Tasting of salt and rock and dust.

I don’t know if you have listened
Ever to the sea, heard that voice
Ranging around the planet
In exploration of octaves,
Finding its ragged notes often
Wavering out of the blue

Glaciers, the crystalled teardrops
We can hold back no longer.
We hear them fall, vibrations
Trembling through astringent
Harmonies with gravity
And a hum of thermodynamics.

We are children still, hearing
The sea whispering in dark strands
Winding in tangled masses
Between us and other shores
While the tide rises slowly
Under us, lifts us towards the night

Hanging over us, the dark
Flowing and foaming among
The stars as evening waves
Deepen upon the shingle
To slow clicks of collision
Resonant with urgent chance.

The sea has become glass now,
And all that moved in it is still—
Look at you walking on water,
Soft hands clasped behind your back.
Your footsteps clatter and clack
As you peer down into the sea,

Peer down at all that it holds
Suspended, magnified, bright.
There is gold gleaming down there
Out of your reach. There is a long
Curving shard of blue falling,
A piece broken out of the sky

As the glass is cracking now
Towards you. A sharp white froth
Daggers the crest of every wave.
The whale has breached, a quick arc
Of moon, and dives again to sing
His long blue song while you drown.

About John MacKenzie

I'll mumble for ya. Poetry, plus most things quantifiable: science, neuroscience, memory, epistemology, baseball. And so on.
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