Is this Goodbye ~ Black Rhino

In the drum chorus

talking time of spirits

in the thick hide of dusk,

I chant to the egret

The song of our friendship

From time now 

To time begun.

An egret spirit

Who sits on my horn singing

Guiding me,

a child with no thought 

But the song itself, 

a song of Savannah,

Now gone,

Dead as dry bones.

With my horn I drum

To the Malaika spirits

Inviting you to dance



As you did,

when you slid, 

down from the trees

To join me in this land of the spirits

Why do you not sing to me anymore?

Why do you always greet me

With the silences of bullets?

Close as you are, poacher,

I can scent the presence

Of greed in your slaughter

You think alone

as you die alone,

But an animal mind

Swells with the ghosts

Of all our kind

The rain-scented airs of night

That nuzzle the hook 



of my muzzle, 

Once star-bright with rhino stench,

Now reek of extinctions.


Notes:

The Black Rhino is Critically Endangered. Between 1968 and 1995 hunters and settlers killed 98% of the species. Thanks to conservation maybe 5,500 individuals survive, but poaching, habitat loss and climate change continue the threat of extinction.





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