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Built for Chaos


I built a boat when I was a child
The land was sinking
and the ocean violent
I did what I had to
I splintered

The Captain steered with brutal will
determined to survive at any cost
Blood offerings
the faithful Deckhand gave,
sea’s blessing hoping to receive
The crow’s nest Sentry guarded
against rogue waves’ ambush
The Jester made fun of it all,
a desperate footing
for perseverance

The Poet-child
the precious cargo
locked away in boat’s hold
in darkness
in silence
for his protection

Sail ragged,
boat’s wheel stripped,
all surrendered to wind and wave
Years, for years the seas raged
and in this way
they became
the stormy sea

Then the worst—
A sea settled
befell them

Waves smooth instead of fist and claw
Wind gentle instead of punishing squall
And most terrible of all,
a brilliance left them wincing
Kissing their skin,
its warmth
Dancing on ocean’s face,
its light
Where curtains of darkness hung
Now where blue of two hues met
One above, one below

Then came a pounding underfoot
A pain-laced voice calling for release

The captain howled in alarm
Mend sail and wheel!
Quickly, to flee this treachery!

Fear nipping at their roles,
the bow lurched
Towards ever-darker grays
Towards wicked seaspray
Towards danger’s threat
Towards their purpose
Towards their birthright

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