Elegy for the Elephant

Tell me again how the grassland swayed

as if in worship, waving to sky

whenever the mute-footed giants walked by,

and tell of the mountains on earth they made.


Of how they left footprints around their graves

from pacing with grief as deep as muddy

rivers—and how they bowed to the bloodied

ground. Remind me again of how bravely


the matriarchs fought to shelter the young

who clung to their tails, disbelieving

in man as animal, man deceiving.

Tell how like thunder we smothered their song,


and man was the last face pooled in their eyes,

why we were blind, and deaf to their cries,

and how the earth mourned when the elephant died.






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