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Remembering Last Year at Hood Canal

This time last year we were paddling together

in deep roiling waters in Hood Canal. 

Checking crab traps for that catch 

to feed the joyful celebration of our mother.


For she had become my mother, too.


We paddled well the two of us: a left, then a right.

If too much on the left a stroke or two on the right.

This was how we went through life:

On course for a future I thought I knew


to a point farther away than it first had appeared.


That night we had crab and laughed and drank together.

Then we stood in the dark in the ocean breeze.

The sailor in my blood knew we’d been blown off course.

Our love irrevocably lost overboard


sent to the bottom along with the weight of empty words.


Sometimes I stand on this different shore

See him out on the boat fading into beyond

Everyday a little farther 

Less and less I know him.


And less and less I remember.

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