Sonnet XVLK (Shall I Compare Thee to a Great White Shark?)

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Shall I compare thee to a great white shark?

It’s unconventional but speaks to me

the same way by your slicing tongue the dark

of velvet ocean blooms to rhapsody.

My heart shall quiver like a baby seal

As long past teary tides your shadow waits

You taught me how to scar and love and heal

Yet still I fear for us a hungry fate.

But why, sweet lover, do you choke the hark

Of moon’s kalimba lullaby as it were toothsome meat?

When finally under twilight’s dying spark

I harnessed your assent, you bared your silken soul

to me; You taught me that outside of light and dark

There lies a kind of grace, a sapphire sheet

where all is known and none is told: the dream-sea of the shark.

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Great Whites, and all other sharks, are a once-in-Earth’s-lifetime type of magic that must be protected if oceans and ultimately humans are to survive. Please help force the fishing industry to stop using damaging, wasteful indiscriminate fishing techniques that uselessly entangle sharks, leaving them to die and/or be finned.

50 million to 100 million sharks are killed as bycatch in fishing nets each year, and this doesn’t even include the sharks decimated by bottom trawling, wherein fishing boats scrape the bottom of the sea – driving mysterious creatures to extinction before they are even known to science! About 70 shark attacks are reported each year across the globe, few of which are fatal, and many of which are preventable. Compare the number of humans that get killed by sharks and the number of sharks that get killed by humans, and you will have a pretty good idea of who really needs to take it down a peg.

Image Credits in order of appearance:

By rosier – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2177755

By Sharkdiver.com – Own work, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4525981

By Elias Levy – Great White Shark, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=40576991

Information sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shark_attack

http://www.sharksavers.org/files/8613/3185/9956/Shark_Bycatch_FACT_SHEET_Shark_Savers.pdf

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