Sperm whale found dead with 220 pounds of trash in its stomach (December 2nd, 2019 from CNN)

and how heavy of a surrender flag must mother earth carry until we say goodbye to our

battlegrounds.             play funeral songs for the sea life we were too late to save or for earth’s seven daughters;

who’ve paved a cemetery at ocean bottom for enough creatures they’ve wondered if they’re our next eulogy.


i’m scared        earth’s tearfall is our only freshwater we haven’t mourned. if our droughts would end if it weren’t for all of                                 the blood,

for the             scrapes we’ve cut with fingernails and our                  own fishnets. how hungry                        our brushstrokes of war paint until the water itself

is a mural of                            blood.

until we stitch earth’s wounds of garbage bags and bottles. pray we won’t run out                          of thread.

haven’t we warned ourselves how suddenly an ecosystem can wake up at war.        army uniforms sewn from whale’s flesh.

war chants we’ve sung           to the rhythm of boat motors. for long as we’ve been predators,             we’ve forgotten sea life

doesn’t wear armor;               only scars        from yesterday’s blood shed.


we cannot ask ourselves how an ocean saves a world

and not ask ourselves about massacre.          or mercy.        or the stolen lands we’ve fought for in our life;

how our humanity was born from a long ancestry                of red flags.

I do not know if water can heal scars from a world who was          once bulletproof.

if it resurrects.

if mother earth is immortal until she’s on her deathbed

in a frame built from cigarette butts and rope — our artifacts from before we bury mother earth and she doesn’t float                                                                  back;

before myths               are all we read of sharks and coral reef;

when bathtubs            are where our sons and daughters learn breaststroke. but let it not be  tomorrow.

let it not be     tomorrow’s fault.

let us not lift a globe into our lap and ask our parents                      why it’s not blue anymore.


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