The Pilot

Stunned by an off-keel tip –
but that was part of the deal
of any such heaved pull
under the pilot’s minimal steer
of his salt-pressed gig crew –

then the high wave-slams of
the clinker-laid hardwood boat
upon the vast ship’s tarred hull –
as if beating upon the pregnant
belly of a dark leviathan

Those men had won the right
to pull alongside – to profit –
to earn their paid return to the
dark harbour’s pints of succour –
but only with the turn of the tide

by half a dozen oars in that boat
timed by a hundred – or more –
counted out from the hefted launch
to that last profitable throw of rope
onto the huge ship of strangers

Mike Bell Poetry

Mike Bell aims to write 10,000 poems, stick them up here one at a time, and then take a nap. By then he should be about 85 years old and have out-gunned PD, dementia, and the end of days. Possibly. Before the floods and fires. Mike Bell is found working for money as a freelance set designer.

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