I pick my way along the beach
The sky is blue, the tide is out,
Exposed pools glitter; down I reach
To touch a sea hare on the snout.*
*(Perhaps it’s not quite etiquette
To poke all creatures, come what may,
The venomous, the delicate,
I’m like a little kid that way.)
The sea hare is a noble beast,
With body plump and soft and flaccid
On vegetation sea hares feast,
Or will, ’til oceans turn to acid.
Two adaptations well worth noting
For those who’d study the hare of the sea:
(And many more paragraphs I’ll be devoting
To this humble invert, so bear with me.)
First, we have the rhinophores
Which jut out oddly from the head
They’re used to smell the rocky shores
In search of food to stay well-fed.
(They’re also how our friend the hare
Received its name, although I pose
Why “marine koala bear”
Isn’t the handle taxonomists chose.)
Second, for robust self-protection
The sea hare can let loose a dye
An inky blast to escape detection
Just like immobile octopi.
Alas, the sea hare does not squirt
When I give it a gentle prod
It lies unmoved, blase, inert
A fleshy, nonplussed, oozy wad.
So I leave my spineless friend,
And continue with my quest
Which never will draw to an end:
To hunt down creatures to molest.