draws the most crowds on the harbor cruise,
pays no taxes,
browses flora and deep waters equally,
guards its young, sups on nectar,
bears clumsy grace delicately.
It can name five tragedies of youth lost
and shakes its finfeathers to soul and funk and
minuets. It paints self-representations
by the bouganville.
Uncatalogued by Melville,
defiant, in fact, of the whole cetalogical-ornithological-industrial complex,
the hummingwhale whistles Dixie while empires burn, oil rigs and biochemistry experiments.
It can get in through a keyhole and then destroy every chimp cage within reach of its tail.
Evolutionarily speaking, it refuses to be mythologized,
opting out of the Bestiary of Magical Creatures
as well as its high-school yearbook.
Recruited by the mafia
it went underground
and developed love-interests and web-based social media networks.
Never caught, never seen,
when it finally resurfaced,
the world was gone. Such a thing to lose.
The hummingwhale settled in for long unbroken years
and began to tattoo its entire body with its life story,
high points, lows, offspring legit and not,
herbology of; anatomy of mood, placing the universe,
illustrating in smaller and smaller modes,
dividing and subdividing infinitely,
always to find one more place,
one more division of space to fill.
by Jennifer A. Connor