Human watching at Logans Beach

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We have a system, we have a plan,

that no-one will see us; and nobody can.

I’m an observer from Southern Right Spies

and I see a lot with my big eyes.

 

We’re keeping data, making notes,

human habits, the ways of boats,

observing patterns, noting trends.

Long-term study, open ends.

 

Weather patterns correlate

with their numbers and their state.

Sunny days will bring a crowd,

vocal soundings, wailings loud.

 

Rain brings fewer, extra-skinned,

top ends covered, mushroom-finned.

Increased movement windy days,

paws near eyes on days of haze.

 

The boss insists, ‘Stay out of sight,

certainly do not excite.

Watch control group standing round

Keep selves hidden; make no sound.’

 

‘When we know their normal ways

we’ll introduce some tests,’ she says.

‘Monday afternoon we’ll breach,

and note reactions on the beach.’

 

‘Will they change behaviour when

they know we’re here, and will they then

hang around to watch us play

or move a little bit away?’

 

‘Next day we’ll blow and lobtail too,

perform a pectoral slap or two,

note how humans now react

to each movement and each act.’

 

To the humans we’re benign,

science research is our line.

Our knowledge of their types and ways

grows with passing years and days.

 

Perhaps we will communicate

with humans at a later date

but  in the meantime we’ll pursue

our aim, to know them through and through.

 

© Ellen Carr 2013

 

Looking for whales at Logans Beach, Victoria, Australia (and seeing none) I wondered whether the whales might try and observe us humans. This inspired this poem. There have been a lot of whale sightings along the Victorian coast this winter, but not on the day we were looking!

 

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