232 words • < 1 min read

Finding Melville’s Whale: Chapter 3 – The Spouter-Inn

Chapter 3 of the classic Moby Dick by Herman Melville, summarized in verse. Read along with us and discuss this chapter or the book as a whole in the comments.

The Spouter-Inn

The tavern heaves as if it were a sloop
battered by too many waves, too much drink,
as three years afloat celebrates the shore.

But revelry is for those coming in,
not those going out. Ishmael wants only
a bed. None can be had but one, to share

with the harpooner, a man peddling
in shrunken heads by lamplight and darkness.
Hesitantly, he enters the room, lies

until there stands Queequeg, wrapped in tattoos,
ax in hand, startled but sober. Ishmael,
and the harpooner, will share fouler sheets.


Deep-sea biologist, population/conservation geneticist, backyard farm advocate. The deep sea is Earth's last great wilderness.


Connect with SFS


  • Recent Popular Articles

    Shark of Darkness: Wrath of Submarine is a fake documentary
    The Trouble with Teacup Pigs
    My research and I were the victims of a conservative media attack
    Mermaids: The New Evidence is a Fake Documentary
    10 reasons why marine mammals aren't as cute as you think they are
    Megalodon: the New Evidence is a fake documentary
    Wailing about whaling - the 2014 International Whaling Commission meeting
    10 fish weirder than the fish in the 10 weirdest fish in the world list