We turned around and she was there
stranded between shore and sea,
beach filled with the oily smell of whale,
her dark tonnage serenading the waves
for the comforting echoes of others,
her great fins offering sand flowers
to the Great Ocean God for her salvation.
We mistook her motion for the final dance,
the soprano voice for a lamentation,
the agitation of her great tail for death gasps
for in our experience we are slippery skin
creatures destined to loneliness,
defined to be Ahabs to her kind.
The incoming tide heard her prayer and
navigated the sand to slowly release her to
re-float with the high tide, the deeper water
where she will be well with herself.
And we sat on the beach and watched
her swim out knowing that
the sea can easily swallow a whale.