Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Day 10: The Geography of____

Yesterday, we all had the opportunity to board and sail replicas of the tall ships that once entered Bodega Harbor.  As you can imagine, this experience was extraordinary!  Below is my draft where I try and imagine what it was like to get off one of those ships after months at sea.

Geography as Seen from the Tall Ships

Two hundred years ago from lull of dank
wet wood and passage, too many bodies
pressed together;  our clothes bleached and worn thin
from sun’s glare and wind’s incessant blowing.
From the sway that had pooled and gathered in
us like a brackish bilge until we were
unable to understand land, that line
of shore defining an end, then from it
the green hills pouring back into what we
were meant to discover.  From the weak legs
that strode from the small boat into icy
surf came uncertainty and doubt.  The weight
of cargo carried across then dragged off
the ship and over the grassy dunes
to the waiting wagons.  There were no maps.
Only ideas and a strange man standing by
the wagons. Still wet we gathered again
close, but far away from what we knew of
ourselves in the rough wood cabs.  Two rutted
tracks leading a dusty path out from months
of salt and sway, over the roll of hills.

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