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Casco Bay Sailing

Collaborative Poetry- Reflecting on our Eight Days Sailing Together from Casco Bay, ME to Durham, NH, September 2020.

The prompt was to write about a rose (positive reaction); bud (emerging idea or some way we grew from the experience), and/or thorn (problem or pitfall) from the trip.  Participants:  Gary Hochgraf, Christen Bustani, and Mary Ann McGarry.

Individual pieces: 

Harmony of wind, tranquility of sea,

Enriched with nature and with thee,

A Rose By Any Other Name,

T’would not this trip be the same.

With the passing of each day,

And change of tide and flit of wind,

We learn more of skills and self in ways,

Eager each day to begin,

Each Day a bud has earned its stay.

And on days of storm and day of rain,

What weather sullies, I can be sure,

In closed compartment we both each stay

How could I get away from you?

Christen Bustani

Rose bushes dot the shoreside,

Inhale deeply commercial roses pale,

Red ripe rosehips contrast with green bushes,

Peel the skin with your teeth,

For a burst of flavor.

Low tide and mudflats ring the bay

Dotted with shells where gulls walk, mew,

Egrets search for crustaceans in the shallows

Wind dies anaerobic odors waft.

Walk the island trail, spruce, fir, pine

Carpets of needles entice the olifactories.

Lean on the trunk, pitch pine on hand

Enjoy the cool shadows and dappled sun.

Gary Hochgraf

Invited, or did I invite myself?

On a sailing excursion off the coast of Maine.

I knew I would be in capable hands,

And sure to have memorable adventures.

Exploring new waters and terrain,

Eating, drinking, sailing, artistic endeavors,

Tight quarters made living on board

All the more enjoyable- cozy company

Molas, fish sticks, seals, muffins delivered,

Sunsets, sunrises, moorings and anchors,

In new, to me, ports, bay, harbors, and coves.

History, towers, punchbowls, engineered rafts, from found flotsam,

Broken, fixed, Eclipse (our vessel) and partial eclipse (dingy)

Took care of us, and we of them.

Lamenting our journey is coming to an end,

Anticipating the next on bike, boat, land or sea,

No matter, what’s important is the company. 

MaryAnn McGarry

Entwined Pieces: (One line from each person’s piece above is added in turn to a stanza below.  The new arrangement with familiar lines from above, enhances and emphasizes the impact and importance of each single line and gives the reader new consideration of the richness of the experience.  The similarities and differences are sharpened.)

Harmony of wind, tranquility of sea,

Rose bushes dot the shoreside,

Invited, or did I invite myself?

Enriched with nature and with thee,

Inhale deeply commercial roses pale,

On a sailing excursion off the coast of Maine.

A rose by any other name,

Red ripe rosehips contrast with green bushes,

Peel the skin with your teeth for a burst of flavor.

Exploring new waters and new terrain.

T’would not this trip, be the same,

Lowtide and mudflats ring the bay,

Egrets search for crustaceans in the shallows,

Exploring new waters and terrain.

With the passing of each day,

Walk the island trail, spruce, fir, pine,

Wind dies anaerobic odors waft,

Eating, drinking, sailing, artistic endeavors too.

And change of tide and flit of wind,

Dotted with shells where gulls walk and mew,

Molas, fish sticks, seals, muffins delivered

We learn more of skills and self in ways,

Carpets of needles entice the olifactories

Sunsets, sunrises, moorings and anchors,

new to me ports, bays, harbors, and caves.

Eager each day to begin,

Each day a bud has earned its stay,

Wind dies anaerobic odors waft,

History, towers, punchbowls, engineered rafts

From found flotsam.

Lean on the trunk, pitch pine on hand,

Enjoy the cool shadows and dappled sun,

Lamenting our journey is coming to an end,

Anticipating the next, on bike, boat, land or sea,

No matter what’s important is the company

And on days of storm and days of rain,

What weather sullies, I can be sure,

Broken, fixed, Eclipse and partial eclipse took care of us and we of her.

In closed compartments we both each stay,

How could I get away from you?

I knew I would be in capable hands

And sure to have memorable adventures.

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