The Death of a Star
Whales have to believe in something;
the refuge of faith ever more persuasive,
when as a group, you find you're in decline,
and in nightly gazes heavenward,
their gigantic masses break the surface
of an ocean to see the silvered orbs nictate,
guessing that they must be the eyes
of a thousand other whales fluttering
back at them from another distant deep.
And these visions feed the fire of their doctrines,
fuel the motion of each elephantine anatomy:
a blue whale's heart, for instance,
is enormous, gallons of blood impelled
on the necessity of just a slow beat
to follow these flickered lights
before they are engulfed by sunrise.
Whales do not understand that stars will shine
only for as long they have hydrogen to burn,
until a black hole draws them into its void -
it is as if they had never existed at all.
So when a whale feels the cold, gravitational waves
released across space, and time is punctured
with dark markers of new equations -
it is again the long sigh of an angry god
to a whale: the kind of audible groan that gave birth
to the first humans - a whale surmises,
though what they ever did to warrant such a punishment,
they cannot explain, yet still, they lament it
at depth - the way the sea is always taking things
that don't belong to it, how it keeps shifting
beneath the darkness, the watchful skies,
the psalms of thermonuclear fusion, the deaths, and
when we venture into a whale's water,
flinching, we know it.
Image is from pixabay.