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Rowing This Boat

Written in response to a River Prompt at Red Wolf Poems.

The instructions are clear:
Row, row, row your boat
down the stream.
Gently, gently
and Merrily—
Sing till you remember how to Row,
how to Change Course Midstream.
Though you’ve grown accustomed to drifting
and admiring the scenery, now you must
Take Hold of the Oars—
Oars dry from disuse, with their
paint crackled or chipped away.
Splinters fill your hands,
hands which grip too tightly.
Remember to breathe.
Remember what you know
of good seamanship:
Sometimes you cannot
Sometimes you cannot
put the whole thing in dry-dock
and wait for repairs.
Sometimes you are in the
Middle of the River.
Remember what you know.
Later, there may well be time
to sand these oars smooth,
paint them a bright, jaunty yellow.
But for now?
Loosen your Grip
Set your Course
Hold to your oars Firmly
but Gently
rowing towards merrily
till the end of this particular
Bend in the river.
till the end of this particular
part of the dream.


10 responses »

  1. Good advice (and I love the nursery rhyme beginning).Empty nest gets easier and better when you find your new normal but once a sailor always a sailor. Love the images you used here.

  2. I am there in the boat. A similar one…Empty nest…sort of – watching the young grandchildren.
    My time not quite my own…but is it ever. It does get easier, so they say.

    Once we thought we would never outgrow parenthood…the raising part. Because once a parent it is apparent one is always a parent 🙂

    Nice to meet you and read you at Red Wolf Poems.

    • This crazy boat of parenthood! Who knew? But what an adventure it is. Thank you so much for visiting and reading and especially for taking the time to comment. I’ve seen your name over at WWP and Red Wolf–look forward to reading and visiting more over there.

  3. Great steering towards the end.

  4. Impressed on your take of the familiar song.

  5. CC Champagne

    This is simply brilliant! I never would have thought there was so much that could be done with a children’s song… *smile*


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