Drying out

Drying out

Each time she leans against the quay,
it puts the fear of God in me,
I hope and pray she will not fall,
next time I scrub her by a wall.

How I dread docking under sail,
ballast piled on shore-side rail,
fenders packed along her side,
waiting for the falling tide.

From Helford to the dock at Cowes,
she always drops down on her bows,
for she's always had an inclination,
to adhere to some eccentric convention.

On the ground she rests her keel,
rolling forward on her heel,
springs ashore from fore and aft,
halyard sprung from truck of mast.

Wading like some crazed Canute,
clad in shorts and rubber boots,
scraper, scrubber and bucket in hand,
prostrate on wet and filthy sand.

There is an arch between hull and wall,
in which it's possible to crawl,
and crouch in torturous, foetal position,
whilst applying foul and toxic composition.

Lying next to quays and walls,
is always full of potential pitfalls,
but as an alcoholic to his wine,
we'll be compelled to do it again next time.

Kate Middleton