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Farewell to The Skipper

The sloop was ready, buoyant
quietly appointed into the familiar cove of a salty life
contained like a pearl
luminous, glowing
waiting for its purpose to be cracked open.
Decks scrubbed
fenders pulled up
hatch opened
sails unfurled and poised for departure
with lines coiled in tight, exquisite circles of
ready for release.
Anchor and chain dropped into aquatic memories
tended by watery nymphs
while pelicans flew in precise military formation
to salute a worthy life well-lived.
Gulls gathered to hold vigil
bobbing, perched, attentive and watchful
on mirrored surfaces
reflecting into a boundless sky
a life more colorful than two expansive horizons could
possibly contain.
Close by, a steadfast breakwater measured the ebb of
while stubborn mussels held tight and did not want to
let go.

But it was getting late,
it was time to go,
and the course had already been charted.
It was a beautiful night,
cold enough for hot buttered rum to warm the journey.
A crescent moon hung like a lantern,
casting silver beams across the ether.
Starry sirens sang to the sextant,
orchestrations of complex geometries
constellated an ocean of galaxies,
and the sextant beckoned to shimmering beacons
set to guide a maiden voyage into eternity.

The skipper steadied his hand on the helm,
set the course
adjusted the sails
and eased the sloop
into the midnight sea.

About this poem

In memory of my father Don Crie, who loved the ocean and spent much of his life sailing her waters. I have saved a painting I gave him once of a sloop anchored in a quiet harbor.......ready to sail. This painting was the inspiration for this poem, and talks about how the skipper is preparing for his last sail across the ocean into his next life and adventures on the other side.

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Written on March 10, 2021

Submitted by spiritu700 on July 31, 2022

1:14 min read

Robbin T. Hartridge

Robbin is a retired landscape architect and enjoys writing when the inspiration arrives! more…

All Robbin T. Hartridge poems | Robbin T. Hartridge Books

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