Issue Thirty-Six - Summer 2020

Advanced Lesson of Boats

By Gary Thompson

in memory of Joe Lewis, Juryrigger

Land is where the dog pees,
the crew rests their achy
sea legs, and the boat is hauled
for new bottom paint. Land is good.

But when it suddenly rises
beneath the bow, the depth alarm
screeches and the skipper skips
breathing, his eyes fixed

on numbers dropping
on the sounder, the crew bracing
for a crash. Wouldn’t it be good to stop
time? Better to go back

to safe water, that primordial deep
that was paradise. Better yet,
if our ancestors never crawled out of there,
scooted off on all fours, stood up

on two shaky feet. Best,
we never invented the boat?

Copyright Thompson 2020