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And in Other News by Ed Roffe


Freya, a walrus, named after
the goddess, Norse, of beauty and love,
chases a duck, provokes a swan,
feasts on molluscs, shrimps, crabs,
lounges on pleasure boats 
that strain under her bulk.

The Oslo fjord is chosen as her summer residence
after a long European tour: the Netherlands,
Denmark and Sweden, making headlines
between twenty-hour naps, so far 
from the northerly latitudes of the Arctic, so far
from home.

People love a spectacle, a curiosity,
and so, they flock to photograph
the six hundred kilo beauty,
everyone’s beloved Freya, stray
too close, condemn her with affection,
rob her with a grin and a flash.

“The decision to euthanise was taken 
on the basis of a global evaluation 
of the persistent threat to human 
security. We carefully examined
all the possible solutions. We concluded 
that we could not guarantee
the wellbeing of the animal
by any of the means available.”

We end this bulletin with pure anti-news,
a constant, like a stagnant war: beastly ego
will scalp the earth of beauty. Beauty was safer
before beasts fled the water and grew legs.

---

Ed Roffe is an Oxford-based poet who most often writes within and adjacent to themes of liminality and mental health. His writing has been published in Lighthouse and Dear Reader. He recently concluded his studies towards an MA in Creative Writing at Oxford Brookes University, and occasionally can be found on Twitter, @roffeed.

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