So look out sailor when you hear them croon
You’ll never be the same again, oh no
Their crazy music drives you insane . . .
A snatch of song, a passing fit
They call to you and no one saves.
And then you loosen— just a bit:
Dopamine rolls in with the waves.
Captain—can you hear that sound?
That song unearthly screaming bliss;
Moaning sighing seas resound
The island welcomes like a kiss.
Breakers rising, cresting, swelling
Bear you towards a bone-strewn lair.
Portals open; warm, compelling
Variations: fleshtones . . . hair.
Your craft will wreck upon the rocks
Though you may live— and regret the ride,
Recalling ports and placid docks;
Oh mariner of the raging tide.
That music . . . let me hear some more!
It surges now behind the light,
Illuminating from the core
A vessel in descending night.
PROMPT #10: write a sea shanty
Now that is a ‘sea shanty’ to my liking, all sirens and no drunken sailors. I don’t know if there is a word for a musical ekphrasis, but if there is — this would be it. I love how one can read the poem in two ways, simultaneously: as an echo of classic myth, or a poetic rendition of the epigraph’s song. I very much enjoyed this one!
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