White Whale

Astrid Cabral

Through humid hued blue

                       the white whale weaves

a starling dance for

                       the darkened room

fins fanning


vast masses of water

                       transparent trembling

                       body of the sea…

Marine mammal

                       stretching out

                       its elastic skin

while its vast and massive hips

                       weave wave


through salty pastures

                       of branching thallus and sargasso…

Could it be a child,

                       the white white whale?

Could it be an adult

                       shipwrecked animal moon?

Or centenarian

                       a submarine cetacean ship?

Lady mistress of that aquatic place

                       imagining herself

                       solitary sovereign

she parades tranquil on the liquid runway

                       and reveals

                       the choreography of a star

                       and sings solfeggios

of old love songs ancient of ancients

                       and flirts

without knowing herself the prima donna

                       of a mega-spectacular

without foreseeing

                       that intimacy exposed

by the footlights of a thousand eyes

                       throughout the whole surrounding globe…

How can the sea so vast

                       fit between sofas?

How can the sea touch us

                       if it doesn’t wet our skin?

At night all cats are black

At night we are all jonas and pinochios

                       housed in the belly of the room

                       that strange whale

whose walls bowels

                       the ocean invades

                       and laps till it grows late…

And so we are another sort of fish

                       caught in the meshes

                       of an electronic web.




Cabral, Astrid. “White Whale.” Trans. Alexis Levitin. Cage. Austin: Host Publications, 2008. pp. 21-23.

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