The Shark is Still Here

It usually takes the ravens, magpies and eagles a day to pick a deer carcass clean down to a pile of fur. They even eat the hide. But the gutted sleeper shark liver remains intact- as is all the viscera, which is splayed out in a seeping pile in the sand next to the body. The birds and animals aren't eating it. There are a few little tears and nibbles but that's all. Could it be that it was sick, and they can sense that? Or is it that they don't like the taste of foreign meat? This time of year, every creature is certainly hungry, but even the coyotes haven't ripped into it. Chip says they can't tear through the shark's skin, it's too tough, and that the guts may be naturally toxic to them. It still doesn't smell, either, and the dogs have not rolled in it, nor do they seem very interested. Forte is much more attracted to the rotting, tiny lamp fish that litter the tidelines. So are the gulls. Flocks of shore birds flutter like confetti over the mud flats. This morning we watched this show from our bedroom window while listening to Wait, Wait Don't Tell Me, the NPR news quiz. We are both pretty good at guessing the answers. "You should be on that show," Chip said. Why would I want to be in a theater in Chicago when I can be here, doing the same thing? How lucky are we?

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