Sunday, October 25, 2009

Simply Footbridge

Footbridge of Life
Written by Peter A. Todd

The ocean's tide is a reflection of Life
As our nights are turned into days
Young people with hands clung tight
Searching their hearts for words to say
Children running and playing along the beach
Building sand castles of their dreams
The elders crossing the bridge at days peak
Mirrored by the evenings moonlight gleam
The ocean reaching into the shadowed sands
Erasing the footprints along the way
Night's glistening moon,mirror of God's hand
Guiding Natures course along the bay
The Footbridge crosses the Sands of Time
That we in our hearts must not ignore
We must treasure Life for all that it holds
For in its passing in Faith we gain Heaven's shore

Simply Footbridge


Thursday, October 22, 2009

Simply A Light!

Here are a few of the lighthouses seen on boating trips over the summer around Cape Ann.

Annisquam Lighthouse

The Light-Keeper
written by Robert Louis Stevenson

The brilliant kernel of the night,
The flaming lightroom circles me:
I sit within a blaze of light

Held high above the dusky sea.
Far off the surf doth break and roar
Along bleak miles of moonlit shore,

Where through the tides the tumbling wave
Falls in an avalanche of foam
And drives its churned waters home
Up many an undercliff and cave.

Eastern Point Lighthouse

My Lighthouse
written by Diane Blue
Sometimes my life is dark, empty, and foreboding
Like a ship in the night out at sea
But you are there for me
You are the tower of strength that I rely on.

Sometimes I'm sad and alone
Like the captain at the wheel, wanting to be home
But you are there for me
You shine your bright light for me to reach out to

Sometimes I'm confused, not sure what to do
Like the seaman who looses his way in the fog
But you are there for me
Your voice tells me the right direction.

Sometimes life is as rough as the uncaring sea
It causes panic, frustration, and despair
But you are there for me
A quiet entity on the edge of a rugged cliff.

You are my beacon, my lighthouse.

Ten Pound Island Lighthouse

Lighthouse Keeper’s Tribute
written by Michael Bauchan

Stubbornness is often said
To be a trait we all should dread.
Sometimes though it’s plain to see
It watches over you and me.

Look at the beauty a lighthouse gives
Brightening shores where ‘ere you live.
We take for granted that pretty sight
When seen by day, but what by night?

Storms roll in to blast the shore
And seem the worst when people snore.
When most people go to bed
There still is a lot to be said.

Lighthouse keepers look up to skies of gray.
Storm clouds make the moon go away.
Sea’s roll in, smashing water high
As if raining upward into the sky.

Temperatures fall, making water ice.
All burrow in, even the mice.
Ice coats sidewalks, catwalks, rails,
Windows and foghorn, stopping the mails.

When pea soup fog came rolling in
Engines were cut amid foghorns’ din.
Flu season be damned, they went about
Assuring their horn’s mighty shout.

Summer, winter, spring and fall
Regardless of weather, through it all
Lighthouse keepers tended lights and horn.
From all dangers, strangers were warned.

Anonymous lighthouse keepers kept the watch
Whether healthy or well, battening the hatch.
Lesser men couldn’t take what they got
But lighthouse keepers were a stubborn lot.

More men would have died, and women too,
If lighthouse keepers relied on brew.
Instead they faithfully kept light and horn
Through the night and into the morn.

Their faith in God and service to man
Stand many times taller than
The tallest lighthouse tower you see
As a tower of power for you and me.

So while you pass a lighthouse tower
Think of behind the scene power
Of a stubborn man braving nature’s fury
Protecting strangers, no favor to curry.

Loneliness broken by wife and kids,
To some it would be hitting the skids.
Lighthouse keepers stayed firm on the rock,
Sometimes with a boat on the dock.

Lighthouse keepers were saving souls
By light, horn, and boat, what ‘ere nature doles.
Thanks were anonymous as sailors passed by
But better that, than for sailors to die.

The Lighthouse Service filled a great need.
Motivated by service, never by greed.
Though they reached the end of their time
It would positively be a crime.

If we didn’t take the time to say
“Thank you for being there night and day.
As you retire and take your rest
Know your example was of man’s best.”

We kids who lived in lights with you
Could see firsthand all you do,
Your coping with every kind of strife
Taught we kids how to deal with life.

Simply A Light!


Friday, October 16, 2009

Simply Marsh House

A house on the Annisquam River in the salt marsh near Gloucester Marina.

There was a child went forth every day
written by Walt Wnitman

There was a child went forth every day,
And the first object he looked upon and received with wonder or pity or love or dread, that object he became,
And that object became part of him for the day or a certain part of the day… or for many years or stretching cycles of years.

The early lilacs became part of this child,
And grass, and white and red morningglories, and white and red clover, and the song of the phoebe-bird,
And the March-born lambs, and the sow's pink-faint litter, and the mare's foal, and the cow's calf, and the noisy brood of the barnyard or by the mire of the pond-side… and the fish suspending themselves so curiously below there… and the beautiful curious liquid… and the water-plants with their graceful flat heads… all became part of him.

And the field-sprouts of April and May became part of him… wintergrain sprouts, and those of the light-yellow corn, and of the esculent roots of the garden,
And the appletrees covered with blossoms, and the fruit afterward… and woodberries… and the commonest weeds by the road;
And the old drunkard staggering home from the outhouse of the tavern whence he had lately risen,
And the schoolmistress that passed on her way to the school… and the friendly boys that passed… and the quarrelsome boys… and the tidy and freshcheeked girls… and the barefoot negro boy and girl,
And all the changes of city and country wherever he went.

His own parents… he that had propelled the fatherstuff at night, and fathered him… and she that conceived him in her womb and birthed him… they gave this child more of themselves than that,
They gave him afterward every day… they and of them became part of him.

The mother at home quietly placing the dishes on the suppertable,
The mother with mild words… clean her cap and gown… a wholesome odor falling off her person and clothes as she walks by:
The father, strong, selfsufficient, manly, mean, angered, unjust,
The blow, the quick loud word, the tight bargain, the crafty lure,
The family usages, the language, the company, the furniture… the yearning and swelling heart,
Affection that will not be gainsayed… The sense of what is real… the thought if after all it should prove unreal,
The doubts of daytime and the doubts of nighttime… the curious whether and how,
Whether that which appears so is so… Or is it all flashes and specks?
Men and women crowding fast in the streets… if they are not flashes and specks what are they?
The streets themselves, and the facades of houses… the goods in the windows,
Vehicles… teams… the tiered wharves, and the huge crossing at the ferries;
The village on the highland seen from afar at sunset… the river between,
Shadows… aureola and mist… light falling on roofs and gables of white or brown, three miles off,
The schooner near by sleepily dropping down the tide… the little boat slacktowed astern,
The hurrying tumbling waves and quickbroken crests and slapping;
The strata of colored clouds… the long bar of maroontint away solitary by itself… the spread of purity it lies motionless in,
The horizon's edge, the flying seacrow, the fragrance of saltmarsh and shoremud;
These became part of that child who went forth every day, and who now goes and will always go forth every day,
And these become of him or her that peruses them now.

Simply Marsh House


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Simply A Lone Boat

Even with boats, sometimes cliques evolve.

One solitary wooden boat drifts alone while the others huddle together telling stories!

For The One Teaching Dreamers. Gifts At Dusk.
written by Tim Bellows

How many times can I step
into his wooden boat.
To meet his dreams,
my dreams? In how many seas

can I gather and hand out
his white roses, yellow violets,
pinpoints that flash like eyes?

I feel warm as his wider ocean.
My heart answers it. Streams
flow underground below the waters.

In dizzy miles above us
his wind currents
whisk across the tops of clouds.

Birds and fish hover
in their elements around us.
His boat rocks.
The boat is still as his sleep—

deep as sunset gold
or one gull´s curved flight. The lights
of stars are seen on the tips of waves
that continually shut their eyes.

The stars and I are waking up
as the breath of the master
sets us free to float
on the ocean of the only dream.

Simply A Lone Boat


Monday, October 12, 2009

Simple Annisquam

It's that time again. A melancholy time. We took the last boat ride of the season up the Annisquam River on Saturday. Add to that the Red Sox loss on Sunday and all are thinking "wait 'til next year".

Simply Annisquam


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Simply Abram

Many of us drive over this bridge daily and never give it much thought.

In case you ever wondered, here is Abram Piatt Andrew's brief biography.

ANDREW, Abram Piatt, Jr., a Representative from Massachusetts; born in La Porte, La Porte County, Ind., February 12, 1873; attended the public schools and the Lawrenceville (N.J.) School; was graduated from Princeton College in 1893; member of the Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences 1893-1898; pursued postgraduate studies in the Universities of Halle, Berlin, and Paris; moved to Gloucester, Mass., and was instructor and assistant professor of economics at Harvard University 1900-1909; expert assistant and editor of publications of the National Monetary Commission 1908-1911; director of the Mint 1909 and 1910; Assistant Secretary of the Treasury 1910-1912; served in France continuously for four and a half years during the First World War, first with the French Army and later with the United States Army; commissioned major, United States National Army, in September 1917 and promoted to lieutenant colonel in September 1918; elected as a Republican to the Sixty-seventh Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Willfred W. Lufkin; reelected to the Sixty-eighth and to the six succeeding Congresses and served from September 27, 1921, until his death; delegate to the Republican National Conventions in 1924 and 1928; member of the board of trustees of Princeton University 1932-1936; died in Gloucester, Mass., June 3, 1936; remains were cremated and the ashes scattered from an airplane flying over his estate at Eastern Point, Gloucester, Mass.

Simply Abram