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Book 6 Page 51
The ship and the sailors
“Steady as she goes!” cried the captain
as he meanders her round the jagged rocks.
“One false move and we may all be dead.”
All sailors aboard” he said, “keep a watch.”
And the sailor’s psyches are gripping the ship
like a mother gripping a child,
because each sailor know the ship holds his precious life,
for the sea can be ‘mercilessly wild.’
So they look after her as if she was a 'goddess on high,’
pruning her ropes and scrubbing her decks.
For deep down inside they knew that its one false move
and they will be ship wrecked.
And so they offer her stories to give her an ‘identity,’
even though she is only rope and sails and wood,
for their very lives depend on her temperamental will.
This of all things is understood.
For each sailor knows they are bound to the ship and to her
unpredictable and temperamental whim,
as they know they are equally bound to the sea, the waves
and the subtle mannerisms of the wind.
This is why sailors sing their cry,
“all for one and one for all’ ,as they work in precision together.
Sailor’s sing loud to the ship their ancient hornpipe calls,
especially in stormy whether.
These are the ways of the sailor,
a culture born we might say of ‘sea- vital needs.’
This is a culture adapted to their watery life,
upon the great ocean seas.
Many a person could learn from the sailors,
and copy their 'cooperative ways, '
For life with it’s ups and downs,
is like being on a ship on a wave.
© Written by Dominic John Gill www.poetry.net.au 11/10/99 email@example.com