Sarah at dVerse is hosting Poets Pub tonight, and Sarah has invited us to “what3words” the idea is to locate yourself on a web map via what3words and three words are given, of which a poem from three to twelve lines will be constructed. dVerse Poets – Poets Pub – Three Little words
From what3words I received for my map reference – Indulged, Tended, Yachts.
“The fishermen Know that the sea is dangerous and the storm terrible, but they have never found these dangers sufficient reason for remaining ashore.” Vincent Van Gogh
Photo: peoplesriverhistory.us. Artist Wes Modes sailed this recreated 1940s shanty boat down the Tennessee River in 2016 as part of the project – ‘A Secret History Of American River People’
Beware the echo-chamber!
Our Very Words
We named her SS Egalitarian,
fuelled her with libertarian spirit
and collectively manoeuvred along the river
wisely steering round the rocks of despair,
avoiding log-jams upstream,
keeping to ourselves, naturally
no boarders here
our company pure,
ideologically speaking of course,
and though we steered so well
navigating this river of life,
the skin of her hull
our very words in fact,
ran out, and the
democracy of the river poured in.
The sails heaved and strained in
a great wind for sailing,
the masts bending
as the ship rolled and pitched,
block and tackle groaning,
yards creaking under pressure,
salty spittle feathering our faces
flavouring our way,
while derisive gulls
taunted our progress,
some of the crew took to the sides
disgorging their innards,
well, some days are like that
on HMS Life,
even when all is plain sailing
there are still things that can
really make you sick,
what helped us make it through
was all pulling together.
I looked back towards the horizon
and I measured by heart
the distance traveled,
once, I craved the everything beyond
devouring places in the wake of drive,
now I savour where I’ve been
and the who of many conversations,
we lost a few along the way
raising the tide with a tear or two,
days past there was no rest
we moored for little
yet, curious, we delved for a while,
more often on the move
we compassed the globe and tore about
even now we’re far from still
but the harbour is inviting now
where I desire to be moored,
with long tables
in languid time
where words are shared
and never consumed.
You want me
to lie down with you
in that watery grave.
but you lie to me of
with naked invitation
and I am so tempted
save for the deafness of steel,
this wall between your song
and my uncertainty.
I’m content to savour your gifts
and I shall dream of you more,
If I could kedge your mysterious depths,
that I might navigate safely,
the channels of emotion
that course our veins,
and so, not risk the reefs of disappointment
and wreckage of love.
To fathom your feelings,
to know for sure,
that I am yours.
Note: Kedging is the old art of guiding a sailing ship into bays and channels using a longboat to row ahead and plot a safe course and drop an anchor allowing the ship to pull itself against the anchor and move the course safely. It helped many a tall ship avoid running aground, or hitting a reef. The method is also used to rescue ships that ran aground, technically using the anchor as a lever to pull against, thus setting the ship free.
Warm as the night was
you shivered as I drew you closer,
and we descended into a maelstrom,
waves washing over us,
yet so gentle.
Carefully we chartered a course
and found a safe harbour,
devouring our storm,
now utterly spent,
Just a glimpse of you
caused an ache
as if I were stretched upon
an Inquisition rack.
Equally, I did not resist,
instead I confessed your name
that I might be in your presence,
and melt into once more.
Four Mexican fishermen who were adrift for one month, rescued by Mexican navy 1,200 miles from their planned route.
The SS Integrity Adrift
Eagerly we motored out and pushed beyond the heads,
to way past any sight of land,
to where the fish are known.
At some point,
the light became constrained.
As darkness pressed our souls,
we turned for home.
And if that wasn’t enough,
someone said in panicked tone
“We’re taking water now.”
And so began committee time,
clause by clause a values game,
what should we throw out?
So went the rods and then the bait,
a tackle box or two.
desperately we ate our lunch
and skulled the beer down,
whatever helped us float.
Eventually we plugged the hole and bailed dry,
but now which way to go?
“Dunno mate” larconically said,
“We’ve thrown the compass out.”
We took turns to steer the night
so sleep could claim a few.
But when at last the sun appeared
despair set in,
home was nowhere near.
To make it worse the fuel ran out,
but at least the shore was close.
We paddled hard with all our might,
the current pushing hard,
though hard we tried the boat gave up,
and land was passing by.
our hearts and boat are one.
But to understand what’s happened here
you’ll have to catch my drift.