There is a YouTube Video online
Of an exploding Sperm Whale
On a beach in the Faroe Islands.
A man slashes it with a mincing knife
And once the diaphragm is pierced
All the guts sort of woosh out!
Strips and strings burst in a spray
That stings the whaler with filth.
I showed my young son Theo
And he told Hayden his teacher
And all the class watched it -
Over again - and laughed.
It put me in mind of William of Normandy
Who died alone in agony when
No one would trust him enough to help.
He had devastated and enslaved the North.
One in four died from his ruthlessness.
Deaths in battle were the best.
Tens of thousands died as crops went unplanted
Stock died, harvests burned and castles rose.
When he had finally expired
The monks in Caen dallied
For far too long and had to force
The corpse into the kist.
Keith Johnson's Other Poems
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