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Article Title

Pacific Oyster

Document Type

Poetry

Publication Date

3-8-2020

Abstract

‘Pacific Oyster’ is part of a series titled Invaders, which focuses on non-native species of creatures and seaweeds which have taken over certain areas of the UK shoreline. The Pacific Oyster, Crassostrea gigas, has been dominating native oyster populations after it was introduced in the late 19th century as an alternative to the already declining native oyster population. Harvesting of the wild Pacific Oyster has been encouraged in order to keep numbers under control. There are ethical implications of such practices which create a rift between policy and morality, as foraging is carefully controlled in the UK, but perhaps not reinforced with the same enthusiasm. My poem explores these complex issues and draws upon fieldwork to observe and document the presence of invasive species in Cornwall, UK. The layout fuses the lines of the poem and the oyster’s growth lines into a single body, they grow from each other into the other. The shell is of significant importance as it is the part that is left behind after the animal perishes, but it is also discarded after consumption.

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