This poem is part of the Poems for doctors project. You can find out more about the project here.
Season 2 : poem 5
Medical Demonstrator Eilish Hannah reads At Eighty by Edwin Morgan
Push the boat out, compañeros,
push the boat out, whatever the sea.
Who says we cannot guide ourselves
through the boiling reefs, black as they are,
the enemy of us all makes sure of it!
Mariners, keep good watch always
for that last passage of blue water
we have heard of and long to reach
(no matter if we cannot, no matter!)
in our eighty-year-old timbers
leaky and patched as they are but sweet
well seasoned with the scent of woods
long perished, serviceable still
in unarrested pungency
of salt and blistering sunlight. Out,
push it all out into the unknown!
Unknown is best, it beckons best,
like distant ships in mist, or bells
clanging ruthless from stormy buoys.
Rights: from Cathures: New Poems 1997-2001 (Carcanet Press Ltd, 2002), with permission of the publisher
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