I came across this much beloved sailing poem recently, which captures so beautifully and vividly my own exuberant experiences at sea aboard La Gitana. I’ve paired it with paintings by the “Poet of the Sea” Winslow Homer, along with some classic sailing songs: Christopher Cross’s “Sailing” and Loggins and Messina’s “Vahevala,” which includes some beautiful sailing video as well as some amazing guitar, flute, and violin riffs.
There’s noting that captures the joy of summer more than sailing.
I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel’s kick and wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
A gray mist on the sea’s face and gray dawn breaking.
I must down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the seagulls crying.
I must down to the seas to the vagrant gypsy life.
To the gull’s way and the whale’s way where the wind’s like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow rover,
And quiet sleep and sweet dream when the long trick’s over.
by John Edward Masefield (English poet, writer 1878-1967)