Swiss Animal Stories
Sea Life, a poem
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When I was fourteen, my dad and I went scub diving off the coast of Catalina Island.  It is a wonderful experience to see the creatures that live beneath the sea. 

  Shadow over the reef

 For an hour, my children and I watch ocean life images on TV.

"That ray doesn't look human, does he?" Mark asks.

"So beautiful!  The forms a jellyfish can take!" Micha gasps.

"Where is his brain?  I bet he hasn't got a brain,"  Mark says.

"Every living creature has a brain," I guess.


    The moray eel swallows the angel fish

    who tried to swallow the octopus.

    A tiny fish with eyes that rotate in different directions

    watches everything,

    gasping continuously.

    "Some eat you,

    and some you eat."

    Little deaths

    don't matter.

    "It's that way in nature," I tell my children,

    "if the eel didn't eat the angel fish,

    he would starve and die."


    A shadow moves across the ocean floor.

    Man-made nets drag, scouring 

    like steel wool scrapes crust from a frying pan.

    All life gathered up

    is dropped upon the deck.

    My children and I stare, silent.

    The tiny, red octopus slips across bodies of

    an undersized lobster, sea slug, sting ray, shark.

    Fisherman fingers move gingerly among carnage,

    remove five pounds of shrimp.  Done, the fisherman sweeps

    five hundred pounds of dead sea life overboard.

    Beneath the ocean's skin, they drift.

    Dappled sunlight plays upon their skin.

    They do not know,

    glide, like music,

    dropping upon

    a dessert

    ocean floor.

Linda Lockett Eisele 2002


I am sorry for what has happened to our planet, since I was young.  My children blame my generation.  Maybe you can do something to make things better again?