Requiem for a whale

The loneliest creature on Earth

declares a tittle-tattler, is a whale.

 

Again and again she calls for a mate

but her high-pitched voice is so

 

other

no one ever responds.

 

Only a man could be this tattler:

the whale calls herself

 

Echo. As her ghostliness

glides with waves to Enchantment

 

frizzing aquasol and feathering

winds, she punctures a mood

 

pictures silence, limns death

crackling breath attuned to crystal

 

sounds of things unseen: sweet air

borne trills dying

 

in morning glory. She composes

a requiem of such beauty it terrifies

 

men, her loneliness no other

than metaphor insisting.

 

Dominique Hecq

 

Dominique Hecq grew up in the French-speaking part of Belgium. She now lives in Melbourne. Her works include a novel, three collections of short stories and eight books of poetry. After Cage (Girls on Key 2019) is her most recent collection. She is a recipient of the 2018 International Best Poets Prize, IPTRC.

© 2020