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  • Ariel Yseth

L121 Windsong




L121 Windsong, born 2015, with mother Calypso L94. Photo by Ariel Yseth

Windsong is very in tune with his surroundings, tactile and curious. I first met him in August of 2016 when he was a year and a half old. I was standing alone on the rocks of Grandma’s Cove when his mom brought him and his sister close by. He was so curious about his shore surroundings that when he lifted his head high out of the water to breathe, he kept his eye open on a few occasions. His mom and sister left him alone in the kelp bed nearby while they went offshore to hunt. I watched him as he investigated the kelp bed and shoreline. He was so playful and perfectly fine keeping himself entertained. There were moments where I wondered if his subconscious connected to mine as I had visualized him doing certain behaviors and then, as if he knew what I wanted to see, he did them. At one point, he breached close enough that I could see his eyes looking in my direction. A few years later, I was waiting at land bank for a close pass from his matriline when I fell asleep. I woke well after sunset and the light on the horizon was quickly fading. There was just enough light to see that Windsong and his family were heading directly toward me. As they approached, they lit up the bioluminescence and I could see their glowing silhouettes. Windsong was by far the smallest one in the family at the time, so I knew it was him swimming beneath me in the glowing darkness. I remember saying, “Hi Windsong,” and within seconds, he began breaching, rolling, tail and pec slapping in the kelp beds. His curious, joyous energy always fills me up.


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