Sunday July 18th, 2010

The exercise:

Let us do some writing about: the boat.

Another lovely day off - spent partly at the beach - today. I should bring my camera next time; the views down at the lake are really beautiful here.


Blue. In every direction, nothing but blue.

The sky overhead, the waters below, just variations on the same depressing theme. Not even a cloud or a seagull to break the monochrome monopoly. And certainly no land.

They'd been adrift for three days since the fire had damaged the engine and destroyed the radio equipment, and two days since they'd stopped trying to fix either. 

There were three of them on board, casual business associates who had rented the yacht for the weekend. The food lockers below decks held enough food for them to survive for perhaps another week, if they rationed responsibly.

But it was only a matter of time before one of them decided that the supply would last much, much longer if there was only one mouth to feed...


Greg said...

The beach and the lake sound lovely, I shall look forward to the pictures when you remember your camera! So, how're the pre-wedding nerves then?

Hmm, your survivors don't much sound the survivor type, I bet the last man standing never makes it ashore! I do like the phrase "monochrome monopoly" though, that's inspired.

The boat

They, the locals, call it the Steyr,
Strange waters, best avoided.
Unattended children go missing there,
And sometimes, things come back.
Marchand is the Captain of the Brinty,
The only boat that sails that way.
His crew is every bit as weird
As the Captain is normal,
It's a trade-off, and one I have to pay.
The boat can travel fastest across this land,
And it does not sink in hidden quicksand,
And though the crew are eyeing me askance,
I've secrets of my own.
We form a small, self-selecting coven,
We who take passage on the boat,
Travel across the Steyr can change a man,
And the Brinty is the agent of that change.

g2 (la pianista irlandesa) said...

the nineteenth of july
I've been keeper of this lighthouse for what feels like an eternity, I thought I've seen every manner of sea-faring vessels, or what some lubbers throw together and dare to call vessels. But in all my years in this solitude, on this rocky point in this admittedly poor excuse for a lighthouse, I've never seen anything quite like the sight that met me at sunrise this morning.
I rose as I usually do, just before the sun. I tended the light, attempted to make something that resembled coffee, and looked out to sea. My good cat, Fitzwilliam, sat perched on the windowsill, squinting at the sea and mewing. I knew that look, he was looking for something. I leaned in close to see from his angle. I shaded my eyes from the sun and squinted.
"What the devil...?" I growled to Fitzwilliam, squinting harder. Just next to the sun, bobbing like a bottle in the bathtub, was a ship. It was sorry-looking from a distance, but that wasn't unusual. As it came closer to shore, I could see its coloring better, which I could've sworn was just a trick of being so close to the sun.
"Is... is that ship... pink??"
- - - - - - - - - -
Y'know, I kind of miss the ol' Daffodil.

Marc said...

Greg - too busy to be nervous about the wedding :)

Intriguing poem. I like it muchly.

g2 - I saw where that was heading very early on. I think that only made me enjoy it even more :)

Heather said...

Marc- I really enjoyed the imagery in the second paragraph.Well done!
We sat in the middle of the small lake, afloat in a small row boat, dreaming small dreams in our child-sized minds and bodies. My dad sat silently. His tall thin body reminding me of the growing summer saplings across the waves. The customary cigarette hung from the side of his mouth, his eyes glaring at the line of his fishing pole sitting unsatisfactorily still, the little worm on the end of the hook punctured and drowned for some time now. A large puff of smoke erupted from his mouth like a volcano exploding ash. "Enough of this," he growled, pulling the line in with the quick pace of frustration and disappointment.

Setting the pole on the curved floor, he turned to face us, picking up the oars, ready to row to the near shore. A smile spread across his face and we shrunk back. My dad never smiled unless a mischievous thought burrowed so deep in his brain that it could not be removed by any means known to man. Oars bounced on the bottom of the boat and his smile grew larger. His arms reached toward us. Long arms that would be unforgiving if it reached its prey. His fingers encircled my waist and I was caught in the snare. "It's time to learn to swim." I could hear the cackle of a madman hidden underneath his usual laugh. It filled my ears until the water pushed it out.

My sister splashed next to me. We dove for the side of the boat, swallowing more water than we moved. We bobbed up an down. The boat moved as if through strobe lights. "Sink or swim," he called from a greater distance. Reaching out and kicking, flailing our limbs in any direction, taking deep breaths in the moments our heads were above water, we slowly began to swim. If not, I'm sure he would have let us sink.

Marc said...

Excellent start and dastardly finish. Love it!

This line really stood out for me:

"It filled my ears until the water pushed it out."