LAURA AND JACKIE SORT FISH- Bye Godfrey

Although Godfrey loved the mountains, loved old growth forest mysterious in dark of night, loved the moody, open prairie, the friends he made in the city. His lifelong inspiration, his favorite thing was just to be- in, on or beside the roily sea.

He said, the smell of wet kelp, creak of dock on piling, sun burnt faces smiling catching Shiner Perch, even the thought of eels bagged in the hostel fridge.. . In Knockfollie’s Bridge.White rubber boots, coveralls on, Laura and Jackie sort fish on a shift dark to  dawn.

Rockfish and Crab mostly, Herring time we sing as we squeeze out roe. Proper fish wives, sharp as our knives, it’s the only work we know, in Knockfollie’s Bridge we sort fish.

Lunch break at an outside table, sandwiches and coffee, Laura and Jackie had a chat with Godfrey. “Here is a challenge chewed Jackie, if you are a random poet, not a mere vagabond, write about Knockfollie’s Bridge, and us types who sort the fish”.

So Godfrey wrote- “I have found a higher wisdom on the docks where fish are sorted, processed and transported, off to destinations far away. By the people of the sea, the hard work they do to gut, sort and filet. Laura and Jackie enjoy drinking beer, boots and hairnet tossed aside end of day.

And when all’s a bit more quiet, in cool of the fall, it is time out to dance down the Knockfollie’s Bridge hall. Laura and Jackie dance into sunrise, a reminder of  the fish lady’s daughter enshrined in my memory, we dance with each other, Hazel and Mae dance with me, dance all night down in Knockfollie’s Bridge, where Laura and Jackie can be found sorting fish.

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