And now the downward years,
Arrive fast on the northward wind.
Sails unfurl, no port in sight
Dangerous shoals of illness wait.

Sail on, oh man, sail in,
Approaching storms of dread forlorn
Though you can’t see the other side
Turn your rudder to the gale.

The driving wind won’t forgive
It’s bitting salt will collect
And burn your eyes to a slit,
You can’t afford to release the wheel.

Until the grave, I see the harbor,
Long and calm, boots resting there.
An ancient dock stretches its hand,
To take my vessel to a sudden sleep.

22 July 04.

Dave Barber