Chapter 24 of Herman Melville’s classic – Moby Dick. Read along with us and discuss this chapter or the book as a whole in the comments. Visit this page for the complete collection to date: Finding Melville’s Whale.
Poetry is ill suited for whaling.
Society burns on the blood of whales
yet spurns the butchers. We are all butchers.
Look across the pages of history,
rejoice! The glory of harpoon and man,
in chasing the whale we swallowed the world
as Jonah, by that first leviathan.
The wealth of nations from that royal fish.
Legacy of kings and kindred nobles.
For the whale itself is the dignity
of the southern sky, Cetus. Let no man
have honor lest he kneel before Queequeg.