Friday, January 23, 2009

Cool Fishin'

It's been cool hereabouts, in a seasonal sort of way, but hopped up into the twenties for a few days. When I took the photo above, however, it was well below zero (yes, that's Fahrenheit) and the little gill-net boat was working in some pretty good ice as she came home off of the big lake. There are still some tough hombres around, and you can count Great Lakes fishermen among them.

Here's a piece for cool sailing:


In this sea of dimlit winter
with its dark currents pulling
to the far-flung isles of madness
through the dozen shoals of sadness
where my spirit jibes awild
in a goosewing careless way

Here the rusted craft are travelin'
with their triple-reefs unravelin'
and their drunken sailors jigging
as the rigging is a-screamin'
with a demon wind a-running
in its cunning
in its cunning
in its howling down the bay

And the lonely are in danger
as the leeward rail goes under
in the thunder of their vices
as they slowly throw the dice
at what they may

And the stalwart lads are climbin'
far aloft above the seas
and a-low the rest are pleadin'
(although no one hears their pleas)
and their knees
they are a-bleedin'
from the kneelin'
from the kneelin'
and they're prayin' now for healin'
as the frigid night goes stealin'
toward another frigid day

- Ralph Murre


Jukota said...

Hi Ralph,

Every once in a while I just need to check in and see what you've been up to, and of course I'm blown away. Awesome poem!


Ralph Murre said...

Rec'd. a very nice email from a good friend, who liked the poem but not the line I've now put in brackets. Considering, considering.