browsing category: Poetry

PoetryWinter 22-23

Whale Shark Spots — Brittney Corrigan

Whale Shark Spots

are like human fingerprints,
and the plankton whorl
in our palms while your
mouth sieves the sea.
Our backs not finned,
not starred, as your
vertebrate universe,
light-dappled and slow.
Cartilaginous scaffold
massive beneath your
astral skin. Our bones
are not meant for
such patience, such
weight. Suction of krill
and squid, swallow
of coral-spawn clouds.
The freckled lengths
of our wrists are nothing
to your constellational
gape and sway. No
two alike, your pattern
of spots, vortices at our
fingertips. Slide away
from our propellers
and finning, even
the gentle touch
of our curious hands.
Take your stars
to the farthest reach,
your mouth open
wide in the blue.


Brittney Corrigan is the author of the poetry collections Daughters, Breaking, Navigation, and 40 Weeks. Solastalgia, a collection of poems about climate change, extinction, and the Anthropocene Age, is forthcoming from JackLeg Press in 2023. Brittney was raised in Colorado and has lived in Portland, Oregon for the past three decades, where she is an alumna and employee of Reed College. She is currently at work on her first short story collection. For more information, visit

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