The elephant graveyard

There is a place where
it’s said that elephants
retreat in solitude to die.
When the aging matriarch
cannot lead or follow, and
her daughters know the
way, a day beneath the
sky she says farewell.

Tenderly with trunks in
knots, the family embrace,
in tears before, she
begins the walk towards
a place from which
an elephant never will
return. A place, a legend
(famed like el Dorado)
for which men in greed
have searched in vain.

Cause never ever will
an elephant reveal where
their graveyard is.

Elephant by Franz Marc

Elephant by Franz Marc

Today Fireblossom wants us to write elephant poetry at toads. Still a little bit ahead on my 30 poem for April with 26 poems.

15 responses to “The elephant graveyard

  1. Great piece.
    Elephants are incredible animals and your poem was both poignant and reflective, making me think of the insane ivory poaching and encroachment upon their land.

  2. This is so moving, Bjorn. When elephants pass the bones of deceased elephants, even years later, they touch, and stroke and lift and smell the bones, as if they recognize who the elephant was from the bones……a calf who lost his mother came across her jawbone later, and seemed to know it was her, by the way he behaved with it. I cannot imagine how cold hearted a person would have to be to poach elephants for ivory – it is said some of them hack off the tusks while the animal is still alive. It is unfathomable and distresses me greatly. What they must feel, when that is happening. Such pain and horror.

  3. You do a lot with this myth,Bjorn, so familiar since childhood–and which typically represents wealth of the material kind to too many, instead of the wealth of meaning it really holds, and which you show us. The picture you paint is graceful as well as grey.

  4. Very touching, Bjorn. Dying is special to elephants. Their family and events occurring in life is one thing they have long memories of.
    I’m not going to research, but I believe that the myth you write of does not exist except in poetry.
    Or that it is not a myth, but rather a truth.
    ..

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