More Friday Night Poetry


The Red and Gray Ship of Bodego Bay

Once out on Bodego Bay,

There was a ship of red and gray

Which sailed from the dawn ‘til night,

Equally balanced, left and right

‘Cause some liked one side, some the other,

And one or two would man the rudder,

And so they sailed through the day

On the red and gray ship of Bodego Bay.

Now, now and then they’d take on crew,

Which, before boarding, they’d interview

About their interests, skills and past,

And then they’d gather ‘bout the mast

To take a vote on whom to hire,

And whom to leave out on the pier,

To watch them as they sailed away

On that democratic, autodidactic,

Red and gray ship of Bodego Bay.

One day after hiring crew

And sailing off into the blue

More stood to left than to right,

And though their surplus was quite slight

The Lefties all devised a plan –

The next time that they stopped to man,

They’d vote in those who liked the port,

And leave behind the other sort.

Their plan worked and as time passed

They filled the left from rail to mast,

So much the ship began to lean

And cut a path, straight and keen.

It’s speed picked up a knot or two,

And they then declared that it was true –

The left side was the better way

On the leftward leaning, port tack a-beaming,

Red and gray ship of Bodego Bay.

And so they formed the “Porty Club,”

And those on Starboard side they’d snub.

“We’re all so smart,” the Porties’d say,

“True intellectuals think this way,

‘The Port is best’ – it must be true,”

For so thought everyone they knew.

So in their bubble they would play,

In that most unusual, collectively delusional,

Red and Gray ship of Bodego Bay.

One day sailing on the bay

On a windy, wavy day

A great white wave upset the ship

And to the port she start’d to tip

The Porties realized, in their fright,

That just one mate stood to the right –

A quiet gent who kept the books –

A cold, dark panic then filled their looks.

They realized, that fateful day,

‘Fore their ship sank ‘neath the waves,

That to provide stable ballast,

One must staff both sides of the mast,

And one may not always see clear

When just simpatico folks are near.

But this they found too late that day,

On that sinking, failing, beyond bailing,

Red and Grey ship of Bodego Bay.

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