21: fearing what the sea brings

not even the scientists when asked
could say what that thing was that
had crept on shore the day after
the shipping lanes were closed

it had brought bubbles
and when asked one of the scientists
said, no, we won’t know why they
don’t pop until more data is generated

when asked a scientist said we lack
the data because going near
that thing on the beach induces
paranoia and delusion in observers

and it brought what appeared
to be South American flotsam
that appeared from this distance
as a flotsam comprised of South American saplings

a scientist responded: we believe
it’s the vertebra or the intestine,
the brain stem, organic, yes, and quite likely
dangerous as observers have suffered

and would suffer more, said scientists,
as daily more embubbled things appeared
on the beach bearing organic shapes of sad travel
over innumerable miles of water to rest

perhaps to rest, yes, under the sun
as yet more water rose under the influence
of the moon to nudge them closer and closer
and we watched them with wonder and paranoia

fearing what the sea would bring next