Sunday, 15 May 2011


Sunday 15th May 2011, A. Palmer

Photograph copyright Fee Easton 2011,
reproduced and used with permission via One Stop Poetry

As the clouds gathered around, scheming

to add to the ocean, huddled
from a sun seeming
close to giving up on getting a look in,
the indecision was late.

The salt in the air
teased a tongue to lips repeatedly, whilst winds
chased breezes through a hair
much thinner now than when,
his voyage, he had first meditated.

Visions of triumphing over Poseidon
with measly means,
had been, as age did stride on,
increasingly cut short
with stills of a watery grave.

But when she died,
the final piece of encouragement
the reminder of mortality did provide.
So before the little boat
flaked too much to be saved,

he would venture out,
rusty though resolute,
years of tarrying and counselled doubt
now second-adolescent fearlessness,
to bury his what ifs at sea.

This poem is submitted to One Stop Poetry's One Shoot Sunday, one of many entries based on one of five photo prompts by photographer Fee Easton. Check out the rest.


  1. Aaron, you could've directed this in any number of ways but your closing lines of "now second-adolescent fearlessness, to bury his what ifs at sea" is a triumph of starting over. Fantastic, my friend.

  2. There seems an air of vindication in an inspired second chance at life. Great write, and I especially enjoy how the ending buries (at sea nonetheless) what ifs after a reminder of mortality prompts intrepidation in the face of seizing opportunity—a second wind so to speak; one readying once again to embark on a journey. Indeed, an excellent challenge response.

  3. some great alliteration and quick word play drive this well...heavy hearted for the man who lost love, but glad he is venturing out...perhaps the burial will put an end to it.

  4. nice - now it's working... this reminded me strongly of my grandfather, he simply lost his will to live on when my grandmother died.. i love the image of burying the what ifs on sea - a beautiful poem arron.
    and regarding your comment on my post - i had no good relationship with my it's not about him - but you are right with what you say...intentional fallacy...the same poem can speak to different people in very different ways - and it doesn't really matter any more what the poet originally wanted to say - and that's what i love about poetry

  5. Terrific. The writer here loves language-- I love the burying of the what ifs at sea. xxxj

  6. Great piece, enjoyed the second verse...

  7. Aaron like it
    I chose this prompt as well tho they were all delightful
    I heard the same call - a sad barren cry

    mine is here

  8. A beautiful poem. Reminds me how my mom said that she had nothing to live for after my dad passed away.

  9. I dig how each line is meaty, which caused me to slow down and ingest the poem slowly. Perfect for the motif of "the old man and the sea." Excellent poem! :D

  10. It's beautiful, Arron. So many fine lines, somuch building toward that ending - a wonderful renewal.

  11. This is beautiful, I have so many favorite lines. Love the ending, with the "now second-adolescent fearlessness, to bury his what ifs at sea."

  12. a wonderful take on the do a fine job of pacing and use of alliteration...tis always sad that it takes death's door to prompt us to live again ~

  13. Thank you all so much for your wonderful reviews. I enjoyed the image the prompt painted in my mind; it gave me a stark reminder to grab opportunities whilst I'm young enough and have people around me to share them with.

  14. Your images work so well here--and convey that sense of marking time, yet longing for more, that many of us carry through life, leery of commitment to what we really want. Esp liked "..As the clouds gathered around, scheming/to add to the ocean..."

  15. Arron,
    Your poem is a realistic note: "years of tarrying and counselled doubt" well describes many lives and reminds me a bit of Thoreau's "Most men lead lives of quiet desperation".