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Author Name: FreeAlfred L. Berggren 6 Comments
Date Added: July 24, 2010 12:07:15 Average Score: (Needs 2)
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Category: Historical Add To Favorites | Text Only
The Sea - Burns Stanza

I see nothing that's made by man's hand.
My eyes make out this deep waterland.
We race sea path this day's way as planned.
Sails full, breeze strong.
Sheets need go far to reach beach and sand.
Sky's clear, way's long.
Wheel feels steady, ship stays straight on course.
We sail nine knots before Auster's force.
No life plays the swells these days for us.
Mates work, they toil.
They keep clipper trim gainsay words coarse.
Know ye, most roil.
Hey Ho, climb the ratlines, hold your jaws.
Stave thee thy bilge or you'll feel cat's claws.
We make Canton without little pause.
Fly jibs, we lug.
Be we slow now, the sea isn't cause.
Blow wind, sails hug.

Author's Notes:

When I was a boy I sat at my father's knees and he told me about life on a sailing ship. He was Third Mate on a Danish merchant ship during the last part of the 19th century. What little I know of the sea I learned from him. For the most part, the sea poems I post are his memories I have tried to put them in poetic form. It is with great pleasure and pride I present my father's thoughts on this website.


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Comment By: FreeN.M.Sodergran on July 30, 2010 05:21:09 PM Report
Wonderful poem!  I feel like going out to sea at once ;)
Loved the language, the poetic skill by which you crafted this beautiful image!

Comment By: FreeThe Bag Lady on July 26, 2010 10:07:05 AM Report
I so enjoy reading the lines that you share with us about your sailing Father....What a grand life he lead, what cherished memories he handed down to you...and then we are gifted with them from your thoughts....Thank you for bringing us your Father's thoughts......

Margaret...a friend in words...

Comment By: FreeCindy Bendel on July 25, 2010 09:07:07 PM Report
Alfred, thank you for sharing your father's thoughts and your wonderful poetry. 
Such a pleasure to read you, (i know i say it all the time) but I mean it with all my heart.

Comment By: FreeShe Whispers on July 25, 2010 12:01:33 AM Report

Comment By: FreeLinda Jo on July 24, 2010 01:22:25 PM Report
...written as if you had been stationed at his side.  there is something grand about a sailor's determination to stay on've captured it so well. 
Comment By: FreeLady Dragonwyck on July 24, 2010 01:02:42 PM Report
Alfred:  your Father is so proud of your honouring his memories like this.  Lovely vivid write, my Friend.


Lady D


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