Beached – By John Grey

A whale beached itself.
Some tried to heave it back into the water.
Others hung out in hopes to see it die.
And many just snapped picture after picture
to show the folks back home.

It was the whale that started the disagreement.
You said we should just leave it be,
that it was wrong to interfere with nature.
I argued that we interfere with nature
as a matter of course and are obliged,
when opportunity arises, to put things right.

Excuse the pun, but a whale of an argument ensued.
It soon left that poor stranded beast far behind,
encompassed, within its rage,
every difference of opinion, every trait we disliked in the other,
from the day we’d met.
Finally, we beached ourselves,
you in the bedroom, me on the couch.

But at three a.m., I, the one who advocated
taking action, said to myself, nothing doing.
And you, queen of leave-things-as-you-find-them,
came with hug and kisses to get me back to bed.
If only we had snapped our picture

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Australian born poet, US resident since late seventies. Works as financial systems analyst. Recently published in Slant, Briar Cliff Review and Albatross with work upcoming in Poetry East, Cape Rock and REAL.

  1. Reply
    Grace Rudolph
    May 11, 2009 at 8:04 am

    I liked this poem. Thanks.

  2. Reply
    May 18, 2009 at 12:38 am

    Very well written.

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