Not Quite a Sea Shanty

Here is the doppler radar image I couldn’t find for my last posting, The blue hole in this case is white. No, not the area over the Olympics, the smaller one, kind of shaped, here, like a wishbone. Wishbone. Wishing. Sounds about right.

I did several illustrations and wrote two things for a future Salish Sea cultural event. I posted “The Blue Hole, Specifically” last week, Because the event might not be for another year, why not post this one? Not that I should over-explain, I will, anyway. It isn’t a sea shanty. I hate to claim it as, like, poetry. I have written quite a few songs, and I love to sing, it’s just that… no, not really a singer. But I do kind of think my voice fits with these words. And I’ve been practicing. Anyway:

                        OUT BEYOND THE SALISH SEA

Foghorns are sounding on the Salish Sea,

Foghorns are sounding on the Salish Sea,

Hoped you might take a chance and sail with me,

Foghorns are sounding on the Salish Sea.

            I can’t bring the sun and I can’t stop the rain,

            I can’t part the clouds and I can’t switch the tide,

            I can’t calm the winds and I can’t ease your pain,

            I can’t replace the tears you’ve cried.

And I can’t explain,

Hard as I’ve tried,

The way the waves, the winds, the clouds, the tides keep calling me,

Tempting me, taunting me, haunting me,


Further horizons I have not yet seen.

The fog is lifting on the Salish Sea,

The tide is shifting on the Salish Sea,

East winds are blowing, and I’ll be going,

Hoped you might take this chance to sail with me,

Horizons out beyond the Salish Sea.

SIDE NOTE: I actually stole a line from another song I wrote, “Gone, Gone, Gone, Gone, Gone.” In that case it was, “Sure, you put me in my place, but you lied right to my face, you never can replace all the tears I cried, so why don’t you tell the truth and admit you lied?” Possible copyright infringement. ALL ORIGINAL material on is protected by copyright.

GOOD LUCK for whatever you’re hoping to do. It’s DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME again. Longer, warmer days. We’ll see how that works for surfing.

Going all Rhapsodic on Surfing- Part I

It is, too often, unclear to me if I actually wrote about some particular subject event, or just thought about the subject or event and talked about it enough, with enough different people (embellishing and polishing the story further with each retelling), that I have come to believe I wrote and then posted a written version to, yeah, this place, realsurfers.

The site is so basic, one page, really, and it’s kind of a struggle to scroll down. My fault. I could say I’m working on it. No, not yet.

I have written (more correctly, have a first draft, in Microsoft Word, of) a piece on surfers getting poetic about their attitude towards and the atmosphere around surfing. Surfers edit our memories, highlight and preserve the rare moments, discarding or ignoring the hold-downs and the awkward falls and the difficulties in the impact zone.

Unless the struggle is what you hold on to.

Let me think. Uh. Um. Yeah, I can remember my injuries, my near-panics. I don’t need to cough out something more foam than air after being slammed and rolled and bounced off a reef to recall the experience. So, yes, a little of that… along with the idealizing. Sure.

A pile of rocks is a pile of rocks unless… unless you give it a name or a purpose or pile them for some particular person or reason, or…

Okay, I scrolled down until it just got too overwhelming, so I will assume I haven’t written about this.

Reggie was talking to me about another surfer. I shouldn’t name him, but, since I am only telling the truth; Daniel. “Daniel.” “Daniel; the guy with the hat… claimed I yelled at him.” “Yeah.” “With the hat… on, in the water.” “That’s him.” “I told him no extra points for wearing the hat.” “You did.” “He claimed he wasn’t in my way; he was just ‘observing,’ from the shoulder.” “He did, he said that.” “I didn’t yell, Reggie.” “Your regular voice is like yelling.” “Sure. So, what about this… Daniel.”

“Daniel; he’s a poet.” “Oh?” “Yeah, he writes little poems, gives them to women… surfers, women surfers; says, ‘I wrote this for you.'” “Oh. So, um, how do they, women surfers, how do they… take this… poetry?” “I’m not sure; but he also stacks rocks and says, ‘I stacked these… for you.'”

“There’s a name for that.” “Yeah, it’s called hitting on chicks.” “No, the rocks. It’s, uh, damn, it’s the same name as… Australian surfer, back in the sixties, part of the Australian… when they went to the North Shore. Damn.” “I just call it a pile of rocks, but Daniel, he…” “I’m calling Keith. He’s a librarian; he’ll know.”

“Cairns. Yeah; Ian Cairns. Okay. Thanks, Keith. No, we’re working. I don’t know; buoys don’t look… okay.” “What’d he say?” “He said he had to go.” “No; about the rocks.” “Cairns. The rock stacks. Reggie; you write any… poetry?”

“I wrote one. ‘Here’s my story, you might think it’s funny…'” There’s another line. It’s kind of, um, bawdy; not that there’s anything, given the history of poetry, un-poetic about that. I can’t swear I have even the first line of Reggie’s poem right. It may not be an exact quote. As with the above dialogue, I may have taken a certain amount of… license. I wouldn’t say ‘poetic license,’ that would sound kind of pretentious.

If you want the second line of Reggie’s poem, ask him.

Still, here’s part of a song (song sounds less pretentious or fake high brow than poem) I wrote:

Don’t tell me you’re a poet, I saw you at the laundry; your costume in the dryer and your quarters keeping time…

There’s more; like six verses worth, stacked up, like rocks on a rocky beach, like… Hey, next time, Part II.

“SWAMIS” news: I’m somewhat adrift, waiting for Dru to finish re-formatting the manuscript, scheming on how to actually sell the thing. Yes, I have a couple of dream scenarios. It’s rather like the classic surfer thing: Mind-surfing the waves, timing the lulls, looking for a channel. Best to you.

Nothing, Nothing, Nothing

This image has little or nothing to do with whatever else I wrote

I Dreamed I Was Sleeping

In the dream, of course, I was awake, and yet dreaming I was sleeping, 

If not sleeping, waiting,

Some unmeasured length of time; weightless, waiting,

Sidestroke glide, close to shore,

Flutter kick, one arm still, one back then pointing, forward,

Sidestroke, sideshore,

Beach, bluff, streetlights,

Outline to the Sky,


That further ocean.

Gliding silent inside a globe,

A lens of sorts, crystal, foggy on the edges,

Like condensation on a windshield,

And I’m not waiting for the clearing.

Gliding forward, silent, thinking,

“Nothing, nothing, nothing.”

And there is nothing; all the thoughts kept out,


The chaos and the chatter and confusion,

Outside the lens, outside the globe,

Still there are lights too bright to block,

These I see too clearly.

“Nothing, nothing, nothing.”

And then, suddenly it seemed, I awoke.

But, perhaps, I was awakened.


I was waiting for Trish to get home from shopping/visiting with our daughter, Dru; and, because my body tells me to sleep at around ten pm, Pacific Standard Time, and because Trish, when I called her, said it would be later, I went to sleep. Then I woke up. Then, knowing there would be a phone call to tell me Trish would be home in somewhere around thirty minutes, I had a bit of trouble going back to sleep. I know I had to have been asleep, but it seemed interesting, even amusing, to me that I was dreaming I was trying to get to sleep.

Please forgive me for going anywhere near poetryland; but, on the other hand, take that, Daniel.

SURFWISE: It seems like the northeast Pacific is generating surf for everywhere else. Hopefully you can pick up a little corner somewhere. Good luck.