I quote Kent:
Many days were spent tacking out through the breakwater, picking a long beam reach across the bay, singing a song or two and then heading back in before the Corpus winds started blowing over 20. Our oldest son took the tiller at age 5, spoke the words “Mother, let go,” then expertly sailed ONKAHYE across the bay and back.
Kent later added:
I like to believe that I have been loved by more than one woman, but I don’t expect any of my words will last through the third millennium.
In the long NEW YORKER article is a good quote from Victor Vescovo:
In its long history, the River Thames
has frozen solid forty times.
These are the stories of that frozen river.
A clever idea.
The dates range from 1142 to 1895 with a postscript of 1927.
All of the entries are brief, only a page or two. They include a man who finds a field of frozen birds who are yet alive and warms them with his hands until they take flight. A boy who follows his mother across the river while the ice barely supports them and refuses ever to cross it again, not even on London Bridge. The beheading of Charles I.
Several times the river froze so solid that Frozen Fairs took place on it, with tents and booths and entertainments. In the entry for 1716, in one of those booths a woman, Bess, with a talent for words completes poems for customers who suggest the first lines. Finally it is too much.
Bess is tired of being an oddity. Her gift has made her little better than a performing dog. It has not done her any good at all. The money they earn, Will spends at the ale tent. She is freezing cold from being all day out on the river. This is not how she wants to live.
The only way out of somewhere is by the door you came in.
“This day I trod upon the ice,” she says.
“I paid and paid a dreadful price.
I will not pretend that this is nice.
A poet as whore will not suffice.”