Dying Time

November 22, 1993|By Vincent W. MacDonald

Oyster beds lie dormant.

Open-mouthed shells abound,

Headstones of days of plenty.

Rotting hulls of treasured work boats

Dot the sloughs,

Discards of another time.

Once they plied distant sounds,

Harvesting nature's

$ subaqueous bounties.

Now, defiled, desecrated,

An unfitting end, an

unjust reward;

Desolation abounds.

When the sea was fresh

and fertile,

Youths were eagerly following

Watery paths of rugged men.

With dying time setting in,

Riding pitching gunnels

In the half-light of morning,

Wet, cold, discouraged,

With each lick tendering less

yield,

The mind entertains

sobering thoughts.

Family needs outweigh

the inner urge

To maintain ancestral

lifestyles.

A man must face his innate legacy,

Face his goading desires.

Survival burns strongest

When the choices for

# livelihood dwindle,

Heritages lose meaning.

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