Sea Shanty

The prompt at NaPoWriMo this morning is to write a sea shanty, which is to be “strongly rhymed and rhythmic, that sailors might sing while hauling on ropes and performing other sea-going labors.” The most famous being What Shall We Do With A Drunken Sailor?

I see the prompt at Writer’s Digest for Day 10 is to start your poem with How —. (You fill in the blank.) For example: “How do I love thee?” or “How many miles to Babylon?” or “How sweet the answer echo makes to music in the night.” A lot of potential in this prompt!

So here’s my sea shanty, starting with How, and somewhat hampered by the fact that I’ve never been a sailor. 🙂

How can you sail in a wind so adverse?
How can you keep this ship on course
when wind and seas are doing their best
to dash you on the shore now?
How do you sail when the waves are crashin'?
You haul up sail and secure the lashin'
you batten the hatch against the bashin'
and pray to reach the shore now.
How do you sail when she’s in the doldrums
With nary a breeze to fill her sails some,
the sea’s all glass and sun bakes you brown?
You sigh to be on shore now.
How can we fill the lonely gloamin’
when on strange dark seas we’re roamin’?
Our merry tunes will bring us homin'
until we see our shore now.

11 thoughts on “Sea Shanty

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