"There's not much doubt in any of our minds that no complete idea springs fully formed from our brow,
needing only a handshake and a signature on the contract to send it off into the world to make twenty-five billion dollars.
The germ of the idea grows slowly..." - Walt Kelly

Monday, April 16, 2012

Where heaven ends and the earth begins

Day 16: Write a poem inspired by this picture:

On a day of blinding beauty,
the boat launched unhindered,
no waves in the harbor
to send it skittering back to its berth.
When the wind rolled in,
they were already on the ocean,
and the man stared down,
deep into the harshest depths.

The boat rocked in the current,
a steady dream, repeated wonder,
the ridges of the water set aflame
by the afternoon sunlight.
The man's father arched his fingers,
done damage over his long years,
and wound the line tight,
as tight as his joints would let him.

The man adjusted his cap, a gift,
a treasure from his father's past:
"I had one just like it, you know,
back when I was your age."
He smiled at the old man,
saw the lines of the sea in his face,
the many years spent at the helm
before the water was too much.

To the north the clouds stood still,
and the old man cast his line,
a blurry vision laid out before him
of a time he scarcely remembered.
He saw young men scattered,
bracing against the roughest waters,
muscles bunched in curves of rope
as they fought the weather's might.

The colossus they rode bucked,
a raging bull adrift in the tempest,
and the old man grew dizzy,
reaching out hands to stay himself.
The wind tore his hat away,
sent it spiraling into the roaring mist
that permeated every inch of the air,
a blooming, cascading shroud.

A stable hand landed on his shoulder,
his son's, and he pulled the old man back,
back to the boat on the ocean,
seated calmly on the abiding blue.
The old man sighed and leaned back,
remarked to his son, and to himself:
"I don't think I miss the old days,"
he said, "nor the fury of the open sea."

Playing on my iTunes at this very moment:
Rage Against the Machine, Born As Ghosts

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