The End of Whaling

artist: early worm 

by D.S. Maolalai

and so
we grew tired
of lamp-oil.
whaling
too cruel a sport and death
too much a price. dirty yellow light
like tobacco-stained apartments.
too cruel. better
to crack the skin of rocks
and dig down. and we did
and black oil oozed forth,
a boon
without cruelty. more oil
than we could ever use
for lamps. and the earth
flapped its flippers
and made sad
roaring noises.
we couldn’t hear,
we lashed it hard
on the side
of boats.

___

DS Maolalai is a poet from Ireland who has been writing and publishing poetry for almost 10 years. His first collection, Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden, was published in 2016 by the Encircle Press, with “Sad Havoc Among the Birds” forthcoming from Turas Press in 2019. He has been nominated for Best of the Web and twice for the Pushcart Prize.