29 July 2008

La Mer Fâchée

Yo son, the sea is pissed.

One person was killed and four others were badly hurt after their 26-foot boat capsized in the Hudson River near Garrison Landing last night. The boat was traveling southbound when it ran aground and tipped over, trapping the captain and submerging the crew underneath for several hours before they were located & rescued around 11:30 last night.

This comes after a weekend of people being swallowed by the unforgiving surf off Coney Island and Long Beach, swept away by viciously strong rip tides and clandestine undertows.

"The Wreck of the Hesperus" by Hank Longfellow

It was the schooner Hesperus,
That sailed the wintry sea;
And the skipper had taken his little daughter,
To bear him company.

Blue were her eyes as the fairy flax,
Her cheeks like the dawn of day,
And her bosom white as the hawthorn buds,
That ope in the month of May.


The Skipper he stood beside the helm,
His pipe was in his mouth,
And he watched how the veering flaw did blow
The smoke now West, now South.

Then up and spake an old Sailor,
Had sailed the Spanish Main,
"I pray thee, put into yonder port,
for I fear a hurricane.

"Last night the moon had a golden ring,
And to-night no moon we see!"
The skipper, he blew whiff from his pipe,
And a scornful laugh laughed he.

Colder and louder blew the wind,
A gale from the Northeast,
The snow fell hissing in the brine,
And the billows frothed like yeast.

Down came the storm, and smote amain
The vessel in its strength;
The shuddered and paused, like a frighted steed,
Then leaped her cable's length.

"Come hither! come hither! my little daughter,
And do not tremble so;
For I can weather the roughest gale
That ever wind did blow."

He wrapped her warm in his seaman's coat
Against the stinging blast;
He cut a rope from a broken spar,
And bound her to the mast.

"O father! I hear the church bells ring,
Oh, say, what may it be?"
"Tis a fog-bell on a rock bound coast!" --
And he steered for the open sea.

"O father! I hear the sound of guns;
Oh, say, what may it be?"
Some ship in distress, that cannot live
In such an angry sea!"

"O father! I see a gleaming light.
Oh say, what may it be?"
But the father answered never a word,
A frozen corpse was he.

Lashed to the helm, all stiff and stark,
With his face turned to the skies,
The lantern gleamed through the gleaming snow
On his fixed and glassy eyes.

Then the maiden clasped her hands and prayed
That saved she might be;
And she thought of Christ, who stilled the wave,
On the Lake of Galilee.

And fast through the midnight dark and drear,
Through the whistling sleet and snow,
Like a sheeted ghost, the vessel swept
Tow'rds the reef of Norman's Woe.

And ever the fitful gusts between
A sound came from the land;
It was the sound of the trampling surf,
On the rocks and hard sea-sand.

The breakers were right beneath her bows,
She drifted a dreary wreck,
And a whooping billow swept the crew
Like icicles from her deck.

She struck where the white and fleecy waves
Looked soft as carded wool,
But the cruel rocks, they gored her side
Like the horns of an angry bull.

Her rattling shrouds, all sheathed in ice,
With the masts went by the board;
Like a vessel of glass, she stove and sank,
Ho! ho! the breakers roared!

At daybreak, on the bleak sea-beach,
A fisherman stood aghast,
To see the form of a maiden fair,
Lashed close to a drifting mast.

The salt sea was frozen on her breast,
The salt tears in her eyes;
And he saw her hair, like the brown sea-weed,
On the billows fall and rise.

Such was the wreck of the Hesperus,
In the midnight and the snow!
Christ save us all from a death like this,
On the reef of Norman's Woe!

The Sailor's Grave

Our bark was far, far from the land
When the bravest of our gallant band
Went deadly pale, an' pined away
Like the twilight5 of an autumn day.

We watched him through long hours of pain
Our hopes were great, our task in vain.
His end was near, we felt sad qualms
But he smiled and died in his shipmates' arms.

He had no costly winding sheet
We placed two round shot at his feet,
And we sewed him up, he was canvas-bound
Like a king he lay in his hammock sound.

We proudly decked his broken chest
With the "Blood'n'Guts (1)" across his breast
The flag we gave as a mark o' the brave
And he was ready for a sailor's grave.

Our voices broke, our hearts were weak
And wet was seen on the toughest cheek
We lowered him down o'er the ship's dark side
And he was received by the rollin' tide.

With a splash and a plunge and our task was o'er
And the billows rolled as they rolled before,
And many a wild prayer hallowed the wave
As he sank deep to a sailor's grave.

"Wave of Mutilation" by The Pixies

cease to resist, giving my goodbye
drive my car into the ocean
you'll think i'm dead, but i sail away
on a wave of mutilation
a wave

i've kissed mermaids, rode the el nino
walked the sand with the crustaceans
could find my way to mariana
on a wave of mutilation,
wave of mutilation
wave of mutilation

1 comment:

WIBR said...

No "Rime of the Ancient Mariner"?