The quiet half of the couple

in golf attire at the table

on the sunset terrace

of the seaside hotel

sprung to her feet and pointed

at the whale’s blow.


She dashed to greet each arriving couple,

drug them to the seawall,

poked a finger in the direction

of the whale breaching

on the curved horizon,

caused the hostess to wince,

her husband to sink

ever more deeply

into the canvas of his chair,

the crown of his head to redden.


When it disappeared into the ocean’s oblivion,

she sat down and talked like never before,

talked loudly, turning heads, talked of things

she’d never talked about, rapidly, urgently,

things that made him want her out of there,

call a doctor for chrissakes.


Just as suddenly, she stood up again,

sat down, silent, serene.