Saturday, 30 January 2016

It's a little ship



It's a little ship but sometimes
the sails blow,
filled huge, made galleon
by a dark, swooping wind
gathered just there and
for the moment
it took
to crest
the wave.

Buoyant and jaunty,
stripes and white,
shines in the sun,
the name written
sideways, personable.

It's a little ship and sometimes
it travels at night
when there's only a moon
to catch the light
or pick out
the dark-hour shades
of what would be red if you knew.

The waters shiver and lick silver
the red deepens to black,
lifts back to red,
tumbles in the shadows
before you are sure
that colour was there.

Trailing jaunty, swirling at the moon,
sail flapping in the cool breeze
of a sea-salt dream
and the big, full, nightmare wind
beats the little sail,
not filling but flying through, ripping at the edges
where it tries to hold on. The scent
of unmet harbours
bringing fear of death
and old worlds,
the sharp stench of moorings
where the rope is too old, dry, weathered
to untie without cutting.

Dawn bleakly rises.
The ship beats the sun,
the red gleams
in the faint grey light,
until the blood-bright fierce tempo
lives again. The next wave
laps, the wind gusts
of flowers, the name slips
sideways over the sea.

© Amanda J Harrington 2016

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