The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #59418   Message #3310511
Posted By: Amos
18-Feb-12 - 08:46 AM
Thread Name: BS: The Mother of all BS threads
Subject: RE: BS: The Mother of all BS threads
Wet, salt air in the dark. The small slaps of low waves , staccato on piers and timbers. There is a light wind, a small moon, and a scud of thin clouds over the thick warm night. The schooner moves in her sleep, strains mooring lines of old hemp, settles back, nodding slightly, to her fenders. Waves slap and the breeze dances among her lazy lines. The moist ocean-dew coats the rails, the hatchways, the belaying pins around the mainmast, glancing the moonglow into the night.

In real time, yesterday was long and intense. Finished a major patent application, then went to a writer's group meeting which was very lively. Then came home and did a two and a half hour counseling session and then fell into bed and slept until five int he morning.

Back on the schooner, the beefy hands snore below decks, heating the cabin air with their dreaming breaths. They are weary and sleeping deeply. They had been off the point all night, out beyond the five-mile line, where the fathoms multiply into the black water and whales sing in the fall. At six bells of the midnight watch they had heaved to, facing the slow swell on the port bow, the bowspirit nodding between sky and dark water, and they had manhandled a large and bulky object to the quarterdeck rail. The thing was heavy--even without the added lead it would have been two hundred pounds of mass, wrapped in grimy canvas. When the boatswain finished with it, it would have weighed three hundred as he sewed it up. The hands rolled and heaved it onto a wide oak plank and raised it carefully to the quarterdeck rail and balanced it their, have outboard over the lapping black water.

Capn Amos, wan in moonlight and broad in his dark sea peacoat,stepped to the side of the thing, laid a hand on it, and intoned a quiet prayer. "We commit your sins and errors to the deep."

Then he nodded a signal to Curly and Left Jack, and the long bulky form was tilted slowly on its plank until it slid, reluctantly, into the moon-glittering sea and was slowly swallowed by blackness and deep water.

Amos stared at the dark water and sighed. He would tell no-one what had become of the mortal remains of the Book Master. No-one needed to know, and the story was too ugly for most people's ears. Better the tale should remain untold.

He moved to the binnacle and whispered instructions to Right Jack at the helm. The schooner fell off, and picked up way, and turned toward harbor.