Saturday, July 30, 2011

The Great Auk

Someone once said, "There will have to be another Earth and another Heaven before the Great

Auk is seen again."

I heard that anecdote from the lips of Gordon Slade as he read his Great Auk poem in the Anglican Church on Battle Harbour on the day a smithsonian research vessel returned from a urchin expedition near Nain. The name of the boat. Alca i. out of Portsmouth, NH.

I later learned that the boat rarely stays in Portsmouth but is stamped thusly for tax savings. Those smithsonian folks must be minding the budget.

I thought Alca i meant Alca I. Like number 1. And somewhere was an Alca II. But Alca is a lonely genus with only one member. The great auk is gone and I mourn his passing. My work will hopefully ensure the arctic wolf does not vanish as well.

On a lighter note an American tour group showed up (they all got an earful of my wolf quest) so an American Flag was raised. It rebelled against the wind for some political reason so when the southwesterly came in, the stars and bars pretended it was a nor'easter. Maybe it was pointing me toward my country.

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Man in the Van by Oggy Bleacher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.