Who claims our bay?
What kind of ear does not care to hear
the flap of schooners’ sails in summer winds,
haunting foghorns’ calls from ship to ship,
ospreys’ piercing cries from skies above,
or distant bells that warn of shoals ahead?
What sort of eye chooses to be blind
to diamonds sparkling in the Bay at dawn,
and on each spider’s thread in grassy fields,
to timeless hills that rim the water’s edge,
or cosmic splendor on a star-filled night?
What kind of tongue was never made to taste
the freshness of salt air and ocean breeze,
or moisture in the early morning dew,
pine and balsam fragrance at wood’s edge,
or ocean water’s tingle on the lips?
Whose skin feels nothing of the welcome touch
of sunshine warm on face and arms left bare,
bone-deep cold from ocean’s wild embrace,
pebbles guiding feet along the beach,
or sun’s sweet kiss on eyelids, closed in rest?
What kind of heart will not beat with joy
to match the beat of waves upon the shore,
in celebration of these gifts of life,
bestowed by Nature freely to be shared?
Who would harm the future of the child
whose birthright is the beauty of this Bay?
It’s one bereft of life’s humanity,
though falsely granted personhood and more,
the Corporation, privileged yet dead
to all that makes the human spirit soar.
And so, with voices joined, we make our claim:
We will not sacrifice Penobscot Bay
for corporate profit benefiting few
with deadly consequences here to stay.
We claim our Bay be saved for living things,
For ears that hear and eyes that are aware,
for hearts that beat with life and loving care
For birds and fish and Nature, all to share.
We claim our Bay.
— Judith W. Gardner