by E D Ridgell
Monday, July 12, 2010
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My father retired here after a lifetime at sea in the Merchant Marine. This is a validation of that decision. He died in "78"...ed :)
Rain seemed fast fleeting netting nothing
’cept a dizzyingly white and dazzling sunlight
leaving me happily harbored in crisp clean colors.
The Bay froze over just the one year,
backing the house to an icy black mirror of creek;
a miracle to marvel and one I’ve nary seen since.
In spring, spreading out o’er a quarter mile
grew nurseries of azalea and rhododendron
stopped short at eroded cliffs breaking on your reason.
Green and yellow tufted mustard fields
growing wild either side the road waked the ride.
The honk at the turn often startled a partridge or a bobwhite.
Georgia Gal, the shepherd friend to your old age,
guarding the white washed house so comfortable,
barked a greeting pretending not to be glad.
Each summer had goals to mark those years;
Masons' breakfasts, garden victories, and churchly things-
harvesting by right the immigrant neighbor’s crab pots.
You drifted there to stay some years before,
to dry dock and wait your turn at being a Bay ghost,
a merchant mariner as dignified as The Cleo fading away 'side the road.
Everything about you bespoke lower Bay.
Coming home that fall to the Delmarva
chronicled you; bow high, into the family log.
And anchored there, you found the blue green harmony
resonant of that water ring round this land,
so flat, sandy, and scented of high tide.
Reckoning my life amidst these grassy shores,
I too love this tribal land and claim my marshy share,
your grateful son and heir to the Chesepiooc.
© 2006 E.D. Ridgell
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