A Prophet Dances in the Belly of a Whale

Ed De Guzman touchtalent.com

Ed De Guzman touchtalent.com

It is the knot
makes the wood
worth the working
The hard thing a man
thinks should be avoided
that makes him a prophet
Not for his eloquence
do Ninevites repent
It’s the lingering
of whale scent

By a peat fire
in suet lamplight
he spun a dark tale
of Europe’s Last Man
and Originality’s demise
Prophet of the Hebrides
whose celebrity lies
buried in the grave
bearing no name
of any fame

“So long as I remain alive and well
I shall continue to love the surface of the earth,
and to take a pleasure in solid objects
and scraps of useless information.” ~ George Orwell


About Peter Notehelfer

I'm a retired people person who now finds the time to watch the little details of the world without worrying about being watched by anyone . . . I live on an Island north of Seattle with my wife named Ellen, a yellow dog named McGee, a yellow cat named Gatzby, and four fine chickens . . . I read fiction, bake bread, smoke salmon, and fish whenever the weather allows . . . Oh, and yes, I try to write a poem every day simply to avoid senility!
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4 Responses to A Prophet Dances in the Belly of a Whale

  1. “Europe’s Last Man” ?


    • You have to connect the poem with the quote which follows it. It was George Orwell’s concept in writing his dystopian novel and the Hebrides the isolated place where he wrote it . . . Orwell drafted his earliest notes for what became NINETEEN EIGHTY-FOUR in 1943, under the proposed title of “The Last Man in Europe.” Ah the tension between the idealists and the pessimists: it stretches us beyond our limits . . .

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Is that why you use Jonah in this poem (as pessimist) since he didn’t want to go to begin with and the people didn’t repent. Naham received that honor about a 100 years before Jonah’s time. I know you knew that. I liked the poem immensely. Your work always carries a certain zing that is appropriate to what you are saying.


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