It is good to see the rubble of home- “Tara”, our building is being restored to her original state, I escaped for 9 days break from drills and banging, to a posh house in the hills. 9 days on the worlds worst couch, which I was expected to share with the dog. This afternoon, I woke up agrog from my nap, certain I could hear Godfrey whistling his favorite song- “Oh Sir Jasper Do Not Touch Me”, a dreadful, bawdy thing taught to him by his sister Alice…alas, it was only my friends bickering in the hall. I did not write much…just these vignettes I will share…
Old Friends On The water- With Godfrey was no need to gauge the tides or heed alarm , or warnings of storm. My head bowed in thought, he remains ever present, the two of us walk arm in arm. I with the questions, Godfrey the observer, we talked with the ease of old friends on the water.
“I was only little, said Godfrey, Grandad took us out fishing”.” With Alice unhappily along for the ride, Ma kept grip on the hood of my horse- sweater, lest I pitch over the side.””The dour old man, that Grandad was , I recall spoke rarely on land, but crossing Barafundle Bay he knew every fisher, they were all old friends out on the water”
“Said I, out in Sakatchewan, same went for my old man, parked before the T.V., he conversed with us rarely”. “Yet in town, seems he knew all, waved to every passing tractor, mid the prairie sea, just as friends do on the water”.
Solivigant- This morning I set out, city at low hum, very early. Sunrise had cleared the roof of The Salvation Army, the distant Sooke Hills at peace. Low cloud magic reflected, sherbet on pewter the calm harbor. And clear as is his memory, came an echo of old friends calling cross the water.
“Solivigant”, I read her name, painted bold on sailboats stern. Like a hobo at high tea, shabby, slurping alongside fine yachts polished and fancy. Baggy- Wrinkle, weathered lines, the smell of baking bread and fresh coffee wafted from her”. “Trust in me, Solivigant called!, we shall journey to adventure, two old friends upon the water”.
Sternlights- Godfrey contemplated sternlights , evening dreaming out my window, looking down to the busy inner harbor below. “He reckoned, the sternlights mean farewell, but also could be saying- “Follow me, pull alongside where we go”. Ever the vagabond, the observer, wait patient for me, old friend across the water.
No nasty couch was harmed in my time away, home to turquoise chair and luggage shop. We thank the iconic,late and much missed Stan Rogers for the title. Alice has sent a packet of her literary debris…time to open it…