When I saw what the Oracle had given me today, I went looking for an old post I had done on blue whales. What I wrote six years ago is only more true today.
The blue whale is the world’s largest and heaviest existing animal. Hunted almost to extinction by whalers in the 19th century, it is currently endangered, like many other species, by habitat loss due to pollution and climate change. Toxic chemicals and the warming of the ocean disrupt migration and food sources, sonar disrupts whale communication, and whales also collide with ships and become entangled in fishing gear.
Humans have not been kind to whales.
A good, if depressing, compilation of whale and human history can be found in Philip Hoare’s book “The Whale”. My review on goodreads is here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/118181104
Also linking to earthweal open link weekend.
secrets breathe between
carry the end
back to the beginning?
who will remember the lost, re
the disappeared? Who will fill life
with futures, release those
fragile wings to
I decided to do my May grid and a butterfly cinquain for both the NaPoWriMo Day 30 prompt, “something that returns”, and Colleen’s #Tanka Tuesday prompt theme, chosen by Elizabeth from Tea and Paper, “the day after”.
When Nina and I first started blogging at memadtwo, one of my recurring themes was endangered species. I posted twice (here and here) about the Monarch Butterfly, and wrote in one post:
Most people know that monarchs migrate from the United States and Canada to central Mexico to hibernate in winter. This can mean a trip of nearly 3,000 miles!
Between 2012 and 2013 the amount of butterflies who wintered in the Mexican forest decreased by 40%. The forest habitat itself is disappearing as a result of illegal logging. But the extreme weather conditions of the last few years, due to climate change, have also caused lower hatching rates. Another factor is the loss of milkweed plants, the primary food source for monarchs, killed by agricultural herbicides.
Perhaps the coronavirus will provide these beautiful creatures with some respite from human destruction.
When looking for music about migration I remembered Steve Earle’s song. Monarchs remind us that borders are only the lines that we ourselves choose to draw.
Thanks to Maureen Thorson and all the participants in NaPoWriMo 2020 for helping me to travel all over the world and creating bridges that reached far beyond the walls and borders of our politics and our forced isolation.