Brendan, the author of Make Anything Whole (Five Oaks Press, 2015) and most recently GO (Aldrich Press, 2016), is currently working as an English teacher in Southern Florida. He has traveled all over the world and has lived and taught in South Korea, Laos and New England. Both of his collections reflect on his travels and the relationships that make us human. He has made many good friends along the way and always delights family and friends with his visits and laughter. Since moving to Florida, he has expanded the scope of his poetry to reflect his lifelong fascination with nature and animals. As a young child he carried a Field Guide of Reptiles and Amphibians with him everywhere and he once had a 50 piece rubber frog and snake collection on display at his local library. Nowadays his free time is used for reading, writing, exploring his new state and weight lifting. — Robin Walsh

Brendan Walsh

Manatee and Her Mating Herd

weeks later they're spinning in my stream rising with me buoyed by me each finding me where the heat flushes where calves crown each gives something others can't: fast swimmer big eyes long whiskers perfect tail strong nostrils when sea blackens moon purples all mute & tide-still they cover me hold me one body in a dozen bodies and we are everywhere

At some point last summer I channeled my obsession with animal mating rituals into a series of poems in the voices of animals in the act. Upon moving to Florida I found out that manatees mate in herds, with a trail of about a dozen males following one female for days at a time, taking turns mating, swimming, and floating as manatees do. I imagine the female manatee delights in this, that it is serene, slow, all-consuming, and that there must be a point where all the bodies blend together. Absent humanity's rush of motorboats, manatee mating, like manatee life, must be a floating oneness, their gray girth like slowly rising balloons.

Glass: A Journal of Poetry is published monthly by Glass Poetry Press.
All contents © the author.