The elephants, they sway
In majestic array
They go where they please–
Baby pachyderm sneezes,
And finding water, they play
Douse each other in spray–
Aunties help lift the baby
Out of the water, and maybe
Let him sleep safe between their knees
Snoring and smelling of honey bees
The adults’ massive feet that pound the dirt
Are gentle when one they love is hurt–
Their trunks stretch out to pat
Any hurt places others have that
They can’t reach alone,
So others gather and loan
Their help where it’s needed.
They give silent thanks that are heeded
By all who walk together,
In all the changes of weather–
They can be a chatty bunch
Or can be cranky when missing lunch.
But their community is strong
Where even when one is gone,
They are remembered in elephant dreams–
Here and there a tear gleams
In an ancient and wrinkled eye.
And they move on with a collective sigh.
When elephants grieve
They know when to leave–
Their tributes paid,
They walk away.