Poems of the Week


by Eddie Aderne

“‘She still lives!’ Famed Yellowstone bear emerges from winter—with cubs
A few weeks ago, a nature photographer who lives near Yellowstone national park
sent a four-word text message to Dr Jane Goodall, the British primatologist.
“Miraculously, she still lives!”
The photographer, Thomas Mangelsen, was referring to a grizzly bear known as “399”
[…]. At 24, not only is she one of the oldest grizzlies living outside a zoo, she has also
continued having cubs to a venerable age…”
The Guardian

“The affair is over. Clarissa lives.” 
—Samuel Richardson, Clarissa

She lives! The world of Yellowstone
Rejoices rightly in its own:
399, grand matriarch,
The grizzly glory of the Park,
Has reappeared, aged 24,
With one delightful litter more.
No wonder primatologists
Are waving flags and bumping fists
In honour of 399—
Though honestly, how anodyne
A name that is, and quite unfair
For such a venerable bear!
Let’s therefore try to celebrate
More fittingly. Though mortal Fate
So often takes, it sometimes gives;
Be thankful: Grizzalissa lives.