Flash in the Distance
I am from gillnetters: from the Skookum Too and Veronika K.
I am boats floating a night sea, circles on the back of a wave.
I am from salmon slime, flake ice, scales and gurry.
I am hissing stick rips, glassy rolling seas,
wild-horse, white-maned wave stampedes.
I am waterhaul and roundhaul, radio fish
and sunken nets; clatters, splashers,
nudgers, jerkers, nothing much
and better get over here now.
I am from beer on the back deck,
baseball caps and rubber boots.
I am from where sunrise ignites the sea,
volcanoes vent over the island,
belugas rise to greet stars.
I am the shuddering slam of the hull,
salt spray on the windows,
needles of rain on my cheeks.
I am a fire in the cabin, a blown fan belt,
oil in the bilge, catching a line from a tender for a tow.
I am a flash in the distance, whitecaps in the rip,
the bow slicing an ocean swell,
foam in my wake.