The sea is not about men and buoys:
Not tea clippers with top gallants spread;
Not dragon-prowed, proud keels,
Wave-treaders of the North Sea;
Not outriggers nor balsa rafts;
No old man with his marlin sword;
No mariner with a gooney bird.
We are to the timeless ocean invisible,
So much sudsy spindrift spume
Creaming a beach with bathtub scum;
So much flotsam, plastic dross
To cram the crops of albatross.
The sea goes about her rise and fall
As if we did not exist at all.
But we will tame you, oblivious sea;
Pour feather tarring Exon Valdez crude
To soil your untroubled waters;
Inject your river arteries with toxic dyes
To silently euthanize you.
Mercury for the quicksilver fish,
Spindle prick wicked fairy wish.
Your tuna tinned, your sharks definned,
Your cod dead and your haddock had it.
Down in your abyssal depths
Grey, drifting skeins of lost nets,
spangled with sequin eyes of dead fish
are the curtains to your last act done,
the shroud to your oblivion.
But she shrugs her massive muscular waves.
She has heard all this palaver before;
Witnessed the drift of continents
And the extinction of the trilobites.
She has been vaporized by meteor strike
To coalesce once more to water tears
That pierced the earth as scalding spears.