More than half of Earth’s oxygen
comes from the ocean.

In each breath, I inhale
salt air, risen from waves
that climb to the sky,
wash down in a web
of white foam. Millions
of minnows swim
through meadows,
where seagrass dances
in the light. Whales,
sharks, dolphins echo
across the open ocean. Reefs
of pink, green, blue corals,
cool taste of ripples
on my tongue, golden
sun seeps down in streams.
When I breathe, seas
speak. Language
I let flow into my lungs,
into my veins.
In my sleep, I dream
of starfish singing
in the deep. I cycle
like the tides; hide
at night, while in morning,
I rise. Waters whisper,
listen to the melting ice,
hear the sea, its sacrifice.

Eliana Franklin

Eliana Franklin is a recent graduate from the University of North Carolina at Asheville in creative writing and environmental studies. She has previously been published in Lucky Jefferson, The Great Smokies Review, and Applause Magazine. She enjoys exploring nature and writing about her experiences in the outdoors.

The Stink Bug