The Gray Gloom of Morro Bay (The Dead Don’t Sail)

The rock, protruding from the Earth like a wort,
stands sentry over the bay while pelicans and other
winged sea-things dive for fish under the watertop.

My coffee is growing cold in its mug while I stare
at the boats anchored in little boat rows.
Around me the docks come to life with the sound
of chains clinking and bells tolling,
and men with beards yelling about sea-things.

I do not know if coffee beans grow on vines,
like wine grapes,
or underground like potatoes.
Do you?

There is a chocolate chip cookie sitting on the counter.
If cookies could talk, this one’d surely be begging for me
to come over there and relieve it of its misery.

It’s a tough life for a cookie: born of the heat,
death by mastication, judged by its chips.
I try not to judge, but I’m just no fan of oatmeal.

It’s August, but I’m in a sweater as the
gray gloom of Morro Bay inserts itself into
this poem. Now that the stranger is here,
I can’t make it go away, so I might as well
hold its hand and say, “Why, your clouds
aren’t so bad. Not as depressing as, say,
rain in Madrid in March.”

A man and his daughter walk by.
The daughter is blind and holding a cane.
They are laughing about something
the father said. He puts a tender arm
over her shoulder. What does she think
about the clouds? Or the laughter of

I hear the put-put sound of
a small boat chugging out to sea.
There are four passengers on it,
one of them wears a bright yellow
and black cap.
From here, it looks like she has
on her head a giant bee.

It’s not such a lovely
day for a sail, but not so bad either.
To be alive, I assume,
is good enough — for the dead don’t sail.


One thought on “The Gray Gloom of Morro Bay (The Dead Don’t Sail)

  1. Our poetry potluck is open, if you have poems (old or new) to share, link in ,

    you can link up to 3 poems, the more you share, the happier we are.

    Thanks for the participation! Tuesday 8 p.m is the deadline to link up.

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