The heat is juddering the panorama awake!
All the world is shimmer and shake
standing in front of the elephant parade
thundering down the desert scape
away from the secretive hunters of ivory,
away from the circus and drunken street clowns with their
whips and prods and chains.
Rise up, great ones, once again!
The Moab tribe is calling worldwide
for the elephants to assemble an unbroken line
heads shaking, trumpeting resistance,
circling the wounded, regathering the children,
trampling the profits the abusers have made
and setting in sandstone a justice parade.
This poem, after a long hiatus, continues my project of writing poems inspired by famous sandstone formations in Arches National Monument, Moab, Utah. The Parade of Elephants formation brought me back to last summer when my kids and I visited an elephant refuge preserve in northern Thailand and we encountered first-hand elephants rescued from abusive contexts.