Thousand Yard Stare

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It was dark out on the flight deck. The stars and moon not visable tonight. The hum of the Diesel engines mixed with the lapping of the waves. The rest of the guys were inside playing cards. He was sitting on a bullnose, where the mooring lines enter the ship.

He was dirty. The overall grime of shipboard life had taken its toll on his uniform, exposed flesh and general psyche. At this point of the deployment, his blue ‘digital’ camouflage pants were were out of regulations. They had rips, paint splatter and grease stains. No one gave him flack about it. There was no time to focus on those aspects or the means to replace uniforms. It was not important at this point. There was a mission at hand. The priorities were to do your job correctly the first time. Crisp new uniforms would not help you succeed out here. There is a feeling among sailors that those who had time to polish their boots did not have a real job. Admin types and supply personnel usually were the ones with nice looking boots.
“Smitty, you okay man?”
“I’m cool”
“You got that 1,000 yard stare going.”
“Naw, I’m just thinking. I’m fucking tired man”
“Me too.”
“I just want to go home. This shit sucks.”
“I know, I don’t even want to get off the boat in port.”
“Right? Let’s just go back, cut all this short.”
“Wish we could, man. You gonna be okay?”
“Yeah. I’m cool. I’m gonna go to bed soon.”
“All right man, don’t be grabbing chains and jumping off the side.” They both smiled. “We’re laughing, but seriously. It’s not that bad. We’ll be home soon enough.”
“I know, thanks man.”
They went their separate ways. Smitty returned his gaze back out on the water.
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Reading The Braille Edition Of A Topless Sextant

 

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Reading the Braille edition of a topless sextant
Borderland sailors lost again above the tree line
Vicious handwriting left you pretty & potent
Dainty cherries plucked from Guerneville’s vine
Coffeehouse grunge wiped clean in your hands
Uninitiated lives failing to stand so fast & sure
Entitlements marked against your vacant lands
Discarded notes burned to return fresh & pure
Mermaids & alehouses swollen in a vamp rain
Self-imposed heartbreak mistaken for the blues
Trying to remember names of those who remain
Cautiously awaiting your new high-heeled muse
Writing a memoir regarding a nurse he skirted
Astral units left you with dingy change to spare
Noting the good stock with which she flirted
Winning the hearts, but the minds did not care
All your dreams left tied to the evening bedpost
Those rosy cheeks, offering you up a silent peek
Locked her in the room, staying white as a ghost
Mocking all the love & affection you still seek
Fingers toy with the scarf tied around her waist
The bard’s meaning left bewildering & obscured
Untied & left it hanging, waiting for your taste
Knowing your future holds your heart immured
Dedicated your words to the love of a woman
Sailing away from her, wiping away your tears
Too many free nights with the dark star to damn
Return trip bound by the change of distant years
Pressed into servicing you under the water tower
Releasing me to retreat & now be fallen asunder
Bathed atop the crow’s nest in a summer shower
Her loose dress allowed an easy chance to plunder
Busted in a brothel by shipmates on shore patrol
Her liberty cuffs showing us a full view of the bay
Wharf rats continuing down the hill out of control
Your Elizabethan Towers blocking the dreary day
Frayed hair in a yellowish hue flowing out & over
Dry rot found along our real estate, but I digressed
That Golden Gate shadowing my four-leaf clover
I’m lucky enough to find you had freshly undressed
Pirates full of malarkey & rum out in the shipyards
It was rot gut that ruined me & not rotten planks
He returned to port to find her old life now charred
Rising sun shines upon new beauty & I give thanks

Last Night She Wore Garters

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Last night she wore garters
In spite of our fates, we were free
I brought wine redder than her lips
Wearing only a crucifix & a church key
We were intoxicatingly in love
I’ve sailed all the seas, always to return
There’s no other to own my heart
She’s the only one for whom I’ll ever yearn

I Sit Overlooking The Harbor

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I sit overlooking the harbor
I’m wearing a silly sort of grin
I watch the sails disappear quietly
All the while, sipping a shade of gin
Otis replaying within my mind
His gentle soul resting upon my ears
I’m anxious, but that won’t matter
For the sea will swallow all your fears

Waking Up Next To The Woman I Love

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Waking up next to the woman I love
Morning coffee, time to take Jennings for a walk
Suburban life – an unexpected dream
Watching my beautiful family like a hawk
A simple life stolen from me
Sailing this ocean so I can be released
Living that life only through letters
Freedom will come & I’ll cherish every piece

My Soul Fills With Song For Uncle Walt

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My soul fills with song for Uncle Walt
Years of running in circles
Trying to find my voice
He whispered his love in my ear
My wheels slipping on the rails
I turn, ready for the future
Ripping down my walls
Looking outside for someone to share
Hiding in shadows no more
I shall set sail for those lost dreams

Patron Saint Of Drunks & Losers 


Patron saint of drunks & losers

Patrick forever look over me

Protect me from any harm

Whether I walk the land or sail the sea

Falling through each day a shell of a man

Visions of a woman out on a distant shore

My lifeless body contains a broken heart

Where love & blood beat no more

Questioning all those past decisions

I stand challenging the fair winds to blow

Somehow my soul needs to make it back

To discover that woman I used to know

Sundown Brings On The Reduced Heat

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Sundown brings on the reduced heat
Wind whispering to sail with the tides
Vapors tread quietly upon the feet
Decisions enter & thoroughly abide
Lonely bird settles down on the rails
Experience brings on a sullen glow
We cannot escape when life fails
Currents grip & provide the undertow

I Fell Out Of Jerry’s Beard

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I fell out of Jerry’s beard
That trip was critical & weird
Pushin’ the limit in this life
Don’t confuse me with strife
Keep your learned looks
I’ll steal a trove of books
Answers come when they please
Send me back to sail the seas
I’ll dry off at the Westward Ho!
For it is still all who you know