Elsehul, South Georgia

(personal photographs)
Ancient mariner’s soggy realm
shrouded behind a veil.
Moist sky plunges to sea,
draws back curtain to magic.

Fur seals shimmer among foam waves.
Albatross, prion, starlings, petrels
glide, dive, flit in silence.
Air is alive with movement.

A Right whale arches to the surface,
an elegant waltz across the bay,
returns to the deep
with a coquettish flick of her tail.

Penguins dot steep hillside,
tiny acrobats on a slick slope.
Great bull seals shake shaggy heads,
ripple jello jowls of fur and blubber.

In an instant the sea is angry
splashing colourful gortex,
stinging exposed flesh.
Wind bites,
chases zodiac back to the ship,
protects penguin chicks and seal pups
from prying camera lens.

Fog descends once more.
Hides treasures briefly exposed,
a tease of the glory
of the ancient mariner’s realm.