The Sick Shark
by Hal Sirowitz
A sick shark landed on the shore.
There was a crowd around him.
He was still thrashing about. No one
got too near him, except for a boy who
kept poking the shark with a stick. ‘Leave
that poor shark alone,’ someone cried out.
‘Let him die in peace.’ ‘I’m just
deactivating his killer instincts, so
he doesn’t roll over and take another
victim. Didn’t you see Jaws and Jaws Two.’
‘He’s only a baby,’ the bystander said.
‘Are you responsible for the bad things
your parents might have done?’ The boy
threw away the stick, because he knew
he could not use it anymore. The bystander
grabbed the shark by the head. Another person
held on to the tail. A third person held
the shark’s stomach. They carried the shark
beyond the waves, and urged him to swim away.