The listeners

Early this morning I sang a loud Irish song to several sea lions. Before that, they weren’t showing themselves at first while I walked parallel to shore. Then I walked straight to the edge of the water and waited a few seconds. First two, then five, then eight, a small crowd, bobbed up about 30 feet from where I stood. I imagined them staying still for so long by gently waving their fins underwater, so expertly frozen in space, aboveboard. The ocean as far as I could see in any direction was turquoise glass, no waves anywhere except a few smalls lapping onto shore. As I looked up and down the tideline, I drew a deep breath of salt air and sang my lungs out. Sometimes one sea lion would turn to another as people do in Irish pubs when someone like me is singing. In Ireland the listeners don’t even take a sip of Guinness when someone is singing for them. They stay completely still, with no discernible expression. An article from Ireland explains, “The singer and the poet are still the highly respected bard, the one closest to the king or queen.” When I finished, the sea lions dove under, except for one that followed me a little ways down the beach toward the old barn that’s got about a year at most before it goes the way of all things when the tides come up to embrace it.
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Comments (1)


May 16th, 2020

1:27 pm

Ah, the bards and singers. The sea lions so still and listening.

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