Lost at Sea

    I left her back home, my bride to be,
    To find me new fortunes, far o'er sea.
    "We'll be together again, surely you see,
    "Hardly apart, dear Anne Marie."

    Her note, it did smell of some sweet berry.
    "I'll charter a cabin on the first ferry,
    "And sail to your land, my home to be.
    "Forever yours," signed, Anne Marie.

    She afforded not a cabin, nor took a ferry.
    Her pennies were few, too high were their fee,
    In a hold on a freighter, her passage was free,
    Sailed Heart of Gold and my Anne Marie.

    Long was the course, to each coastal city,
    The skipper had business, a trader was he.
    She withstood the hard days, not e'er a plea,
    Watching the ocean, my Anne Marie.

    'Twere the last night they had, out on the sea,
    The holds bursting full of prize ebony,
    Crates of rich spices, of honey and tea,
    And best of all, my Anne Marie.

    The crew counted shares, and had a party,
    And invited the skipper to rum and brandy.
    No drunkard did feel the swell of the sea,
    Much less could she, asleep Anne Marie.

    A thick morning fog hid the bound'ry,
    Of the Devil's Triangle, that place most deadly.
    Waves crashed on deck, ending the party,
    Dream it must be, thought Anne Marie.

    Skipper barked out orders, in a wild fury,
    "Tack off to starboard! Watch, helm's a-lee!
    "Batten the holds, pull slack off that shee'!
    "Head below, mate, wake Anne Marie!"

    The water was rising, the ship they would flee,
    What came to hand fast shoved in the dinghy,
    Twelve pounds of gold, a drunk crewman or three,
    Not one of the saved, my Anne Marie.

    We lost the Heart of Gold that night at sea,
    Her skipper were saved, but lost was she
    Somewhere dark in the cruel Devil's lee;
    And drowned asleep, my Anne Marie.

    The skipper, ashamed, wracked in guilt was he,
    He carved a masthead from a storm-fallen tree.
    The smooth form he had crafted, a sight to see:
    A wooden twin o' my Anne Marie.

    That oaken-grained siren, she did call to me,
    Dead no more, spending her days on the sea,
    The Devil's Triangle could ne'er kill she,
    She lives again, my Anne Marie.

    That skipper now sails the southern sea,
    From the Devil and rum he tries to flee,
    Bewitched, beguiled, and curs-ed be,
    Protect him well, my Anne Marie.

--by Ed Halley 1998

obLinks: poetry Anne Marie skipper masthead Heart of Gold Devil's Triangle 1998

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