The sea sings out to its many saviors:

Teenagers with fists thrust into the air at climate strikes,

Scientists converging around their data,

A child who stoops to scoop up a piece of trash.

The sea sings out for its singular subjects:

Arching whales that wave from their waves,

Turtles that teeter down their shining shores,

Coral reefs shining brightly as cities.

The sea sings out its suffering,

Knowing too much of waste, screeching sounds

And pernicious poison, its depths bruised by

Atrocities in the Atlantic,

Misery in the Mediterranean,

Its tides the preservers of time past.

The story of the ocean and the story of humanity

Are one and the same, a Great River that

Knows no borders and notes no lines,

Only ripples.

While we might call it the Seven Seas,

Today we sing out your true name:

The one ocean.

For no matter how we try to separate your waters,

You are the colossus that connects us.

Water makes up 70% of Earth,

70% of the human heart,

And 70% of the human being,

All of us, bodies of water,

For we, too are oceans,

Or at least beings bobbing in the same boat.

To stand up for for our ocean

Is to stand up for our own ship

The sea is a restless, strong collective of many pieces.

So are we.

The ocean can recover.

And so will we.

Let us not divide the tides,

But discover all they have to teach us–

Green meadows of sea grass that survive pathogens,

Blue-bloodied marine snails that can fight off viruses.

There are more lessons to learn,

Still more work to be done.

So we lift our faces to the sun.

May the seas help us see healing and hope,

May we sing out the ocean’s survival and revival.

Being the people of this blue planet is our most

Profound privilege and power,

For if we be the ocean’s saviors,

Then it is surely ours.

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In June 2020, Lonely Whale collaborated with Atmos and Future Earth to produce “Ode to Our Ocean” — a poem by Amanda written for World Oceans Day that shines as a call to action for everyone to recognize that “for we, too, are oceans.”

There are few pens as recognizable today as the one that belongs to Amanda Gorman, the poet and activist who shook the world with a message of hope on January 20th, 2021 when she took the podium at the inauguration of the 46th president of the United States.

Words spill from her lips like drops of blessed rain after a drought; proof of the magic in poetry and art to connect us across great distances. Since that moment, Amanda Gorman has become the first ever poet to recite an original poem at the Super Bowl. She also made the #TIME100NEXT list.

“Being the people of this blue planet is our most

Profound privilege and power,

For if we be the ocean’s saviors,

Then it is surely ours.”

Amanda Gorman, Ode To Our Ocean

When Amanda speaks, the power of art and collaborative storytelling to move people to action is unmistakable, and so is the power of youth. “Ode to Our Ocean,” makes it clear that we are not separate from the ocean; we are part of it, just as we are never totally separate from each other.

In June 2020, Lonely Whale collaborated with Atmos and Future Earth to produce “Ode to Our Ocean” — a poem by Amanda written for World Oceans Day that shines as a call to action for everyone to recognize that “for we, too, are oceans.”

Amanda performed the poem in the video below which was produced in collaboration between our team at Lonely Whale, Atmos and Future Earth, and edited by Emma Blackman. Footage was provided by our treasured friends and partners; Tori Tsui, Brooke Ryan Davis, Candace Crespi, Danni Washington, George McKenzie, Jr., and Christopher Leidy. Their contributions are further evidence of the ways that art brings people together.

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