Poet Commentaries


The sloop slushed.
The woodwinds spent;
their reeds cracked
and all breath taken.
The hum of contrails
coming off the sail,
rudder and hull…
Percussions begin.
The wake catches up
and, with the crests,
they beat the hull.
Sheets snap,
slack lines are plinked;
the tiller a wood stick
in a void.


There is no metronome
that can keep beat to
“dead in the water”.
The composer smiles.
The maestro taps
trying to bring order
to reams of full rests.

The whole orchestra
nothing but a restless shuffle
drifting listlessly
with but misplayed
sporadic coughs
and scraped chairs.
They are trained
for pulling just so
on rudder and line,
loving their part
but you can’t pull
in perfect languid,
and no score is written
for breathless.
Alone and unseen
in the inside of a shell
I place my ear on the hull,
the mast and halyard
and understand the worth
of nothing played well.
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