Walrus Soon To Be On Edangered List

Ice gone, 35,000 walruses crowd on land. With floating ice sparse in the Chukchi Sea, an estimated 35,000 walruses were found crowded onto a beach near the Northwest Alaska village of Point Lay, according to federal biologists. To environmentalists, the exceptionally large gathering is a warning sign. Alaska Dispatch News, Alaska

 

The Walrus and The Carpenter

Lewis Carroll

(from Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There, 1872)

The sun was shining on the sea,
Shining with all his might:
He did his very best to make
The billows smooth and bright–
And this was odd, because it was
The middle of the night.

The moon was shining sulkily,
Because she thought the sun
Had got no business to be there
After the day was done–
“It’s very rude of him,” she said,
“To come and spoil the fun!”

The sea was wet as wet could be,
The sands were dry as dry.
You could not see a cloud, because
No cloud was in the sky:
No birds were flying overhead–
There were no birds to fly.

The Walrus and the Carpenter
Were walking close at hand;
They wept like anything to see
Such quantities of sand:
“If this were only cleared away,”
They said, “it would be grand!”

“If seven maids with seven mops
Swept it for half a year.
Do you suppose,” the Walrus said,
“That they could get it clear?”
“I doubt it,” said the Carpenter,
And shed a bitter tear.

“O Oysters, come and walk with us!”
The Walrus did beseech.
“A pleasant walk, a pleasant talk,
Along the briny beach:
We cannot do with more than four,
To give a hand to each.”

The eldest Oyster looked at him,
But never a word he said:
The eldest Oyster winked his eye,
And shook his heavy head–
Meaning to say he did not choose
To leave the oyster-bed.

But four young Oysters hurried up,
All eager for the treat:
Their coats were brushed, their faces washed,
Their shoes were clean and neat–
And this was odd, because, you know,
They hadn’t any feet.

Four other Oysters followed them,
And yet another four;
And thick and fast they came at last,
And more, and more, and more–
All hopping through the frothy waves,
And scrambling to the shore.

The Walrus and the Carpenter
Walked on a mile or so,
And then they rested on a rock
Conveniently low:
And all the little Oysters stood
And waited in a row.

“The time has come,” the Walrus said,
“To talk of many things:
Of shoes–and ships–and sealing-wax–
Of cabbages–and kings–
And why the sea is boiling hot–
And whether pigs have wings.”

“But wait a bit,” the Oysters cried,
“Before we have our chat;
For some of us are out of breath,
And all of us are fat!”
“No hurry!” said the Carpenter.
They thanked him much for that.

“A loaf of bread,” the Walrus said,
“Is what we chiefly need:
Pepper and vinegar besides
Are very good indeed–
Now if you’re ready, Oysters dear,
We can begin to feed.”

“But not on us!” the Oysters cried,
Turning a little blue.
“After such kindness, that would be
A dismal thing to do!”
“The night is fine,” the Walrus said.
“Do you admire the view?

“It was so kind of you to come!
And you are very nice!”
The Carpenter said nothing but
“Cut us another slice:
I wish you were not quite so deaf–
I’ve had to ask you twice!”

“It seems a shame,” the Walrus said,
“To play them such a trick,
After we’ve brought them out so far,
And made them trot so quick!”
The Carpenter said nothing but
“The butter’s spread too thick!”

“I weep for you,” the Walrus said:
“I deeply sympathize.”
With sobs and tears he sorted out
Those of the largest size,
Holding his pocket-handkerchief
Before his streaming eyes.

“O Oysters,” said the Carpenter,
“You’ve had a pleasant run!
Shall we be trotting home again?’
But answer came there none–
And this was scarcely odd, because
They’d eaten every one.

 

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7 comments on “Walrus Soon To Be On Edangered List

  1. John says:

    I was reading about this yesterday … it is such a horrible story. And, what I think is even more horrifying is that there are still those who think there is nothing wrong with the environmental changes that are occurring. It is sad to see so many creatures perish because of our stupidity … (ok, I’ll step down from the soap box….)

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have been to Alaska, but not recently,’twas 46 years ago. I only know what I read. If it is bad enough for them to be on the endangered list, its bad. I am not a climate change nay-sayer. It is real. I’m pretty sure we people can adapt, one way or another, but not all of the critters can.

      In the comments for the article (which uses Facebook tech) a few Alaska residents said this was a usual, annual gathering. Also stampeded events are not completely out of the norm either.

      But with the figures quoted, that I read, it is almost twice as large a gathering as is usually in any one spot.

      Some people suggested anchored floating docks off shore, as alternative resting places. I seem to remember photos of floating Japanese cement docks washing up on shore, in Alaska, post tsunami. Perhaps some of those items could be towed out and incorporated into a Walrus rest area, or several, it would take a lot of doing. 35,000 is a lot of animals. BIG animals, with tusks. Big problem. Polar bears are BIG, too, with big teeth and claws.

      Like

  2. SalvaVenia says:

    Too many stupid people around. Just because they do not know, it must be brother climate to be blamed …

    Nice idea to introduce Caroll here. 🙂

    Like

    • I just found this in the SPAM folder, and un-spammed it. 10.04.2014. Which people are the stupid ones, do you think? Misinformed is not necessarily stupid. There is a cure for ignorant. There is no cure for stupid.

      BTW I do admire Germany’s progress towards doing away with nuclear power sources.

      Liked by 1 person

      • SalvaVenia says:

        Regarding those Nuclear Power Stations, that’s just a scam.

        Stupid or misinformed … Well, that’s a fine line, sometimes. Is acting against your own interests stupid, or not? It’s hard to believe someone being “misinformed”, at least in our present age and living in the first world …

        Like

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