Underworld Blues


She-be-gone to the tide not willingly but as if summoned
out past the docks by the ocean sigh
that undulates toward her like a wooing lover
and compelled she begins to submerge herself
she feels them underneath, their currents send waves and they are thunderously large though they wallow slow and gentle,
their smallest movement monumental because of the currents, the currents, and it frightens her but thrills her too
and the whales want her down there in the underworld but she wants to stay up here in the overworld
still, they play and cavort and they tickle her feet,
teasing, come play with us, they say, we love you
and her heart swells and she wants to play and slips under
and they pull her down, they hypnotise her and call her and sing so sweetly
a deep sea serenade, and she is tortured by their grace and falls below the surface and watches their beautiful dance
but rises again gasping, she wants to stay, stay in the overworld, that’s where she’s from, that’s who she is
but they whisper and stroke her and tease her with their tender tongues until she can’t help but slowly sink and tumble and fall for their song
and be gulped by their vast titanic souls.

© N Nazir 2019
(Image © Flip Nicklin, nationalgeographic.com)