The Ghost Corps
It was the flood of the century, everyone said
And I felt foolish at first, worrying about the zoo
But the more I thought of the place
built on an island, and the waters rising
ever higher--the sicker I felt--
But it seemed like all was well, at least
it seemed that way until I heard about them.
Them, being the giraffes, the gangling goofy
big, lumbering, spotted, long-necked mammals
that have no distinctive sounds and ugly black
snake-like tongues. They, it turns out, really
hate change, and aren't too fond of cold and wet.
Imagine, as I couldn't help doing, how these
almost domesticated ones must have felt,
locked in their pens, with no fresh water or food
appearing, for days and days--it ended up being
over a week--and no light at night, which they
were used to, no human voices or touch
which they were also used to . . .
I couldn't help picturing these gentle giants
with their long-lashed, doe-eyed faces
looking so perplexed-- and they can,
I've seen them--looking askance when
the male lions are upset and making
their grunting noises that can be heard
all over the zoo. I'm betting there was lots
of that going on, amongst other perturbed
Did you know there are many varieties
of giraffes in the world? And all of them
endangered of becoming extinct?
Some can only be found inside the pseudo
protection of zoo enclosures
and many cannot be found anywhere at all
now, hunted or starved off the earth already.
In my dreams these long-legged ones
from the flood gallop silently as if racing
with eternity; they look peaceful.
I get the sense they think they're winning.
S.E. Ingraham continues to pen poems from Edmonton, Alberta. Her work of late has tended toward that of poet of witness, and she is pleased to announce her poem, "The Inevitability of Light" appears online and in print with, Poets 4 Paris, plus several poems from her "Baby M" collection appear on the I Am Not a Silent Poet site. Ingraham remains committed to honing her craft, and to that end completed the MOOC's The Art of Poetry, plus, Sharpened Visions, recently, and has been selected to attend the Home School Hudson this summer. She will also remain a CTA with the ModPo MOOC out of University of Pennsylvania. More of her work may be found here: http:thesoundofthewordnight.blogger.ca