Monday, 21 April 2014

The Boating Year

I'm feeling a bit lyrical today so I put my fingers to keys and had a go at summing up the boating year. When you think about it, its often March before we set off and September sees the cruising season draw to a close. So in reality its only half a boating year.

The Boating Year

Christmas has been and gone, it's the start of another year;
canals now starved of cash, will our lifestyle disappear;
January is cold and wet, and the towpath strewn with mud;
potholes puddles and dog shit, to walk there now not good.

The clock tick-ticks on and on, and the day drags by so slow;
canal boat life is now halted, our spirits also are so low;
February freezes the water, ice covers where you walk;
dirty snow lies on the ground, its too cold to stop and talk.

Daylight starts to lengthen, the water begins to flow;
snow has turned to rain, and the wind begins to blow;
March brings that madness, to get everything repaired;
end of the stoppage season, faults have all been squared.

Easter is the cruising season, and all our plans now laid;
routes and paths are chosen, the count of locks is made;
April is a time for showers, a weak sun is there as well;
the early leaf are opening, spring flowers a heady smell.

The hedgerow is full of blossom, the birds are sing now;
summer is not so far away, the fields put to the plough;
May is the boaters month, a time when gentle breezes play;
the kingfisher and the heron, each seek out their prey.

The sunshine has dispelled, the winters gloom and doom;
glorious is the season, bright yellow flowers of broom;
June is when the sun climbs, ever upwards in the sky;
soon we will reach the solstice, the sun is at its high.

Warm are summer evenings, the twilight a starry glow;
the soporific sound of insect, and raucous calls of crow;
July brings the best of summer, the sunset lingers on;
shadows of the afterglow, gliding silhouette of a swan.

Flowers are everywhere, bees work from day till night;
bats and owls out hunting, swoop on silent wings of flight;
August fruit begins to swell, a promised plenty to come;
heavily fruiting branches, of apple cherry and plum.

Now the year is more fulsome, as the season is mature;
chicks and kits are growing, a return to our place to moor;
September days grow shorter, life begins to wind down;
bright greens are now turning, a rustic yellow and brown.

The summer cruising season, draws to an autumnal end;
preparing for the winter, moored once again with friends;
October has chill mornings, swirls of mist hang in the air;
boat stove is now smoking, heavy clothes we start to wear.

Autumn is chestnut and fireworks, now its bonfire time;
squalls of wind blown rain, mark a season of frosty rime;
November is depressing, sitting huddled round the fire;
longing for summer days, and cruise to my hearts desire.

Time to repair and mend, preoccupied by distant thoughts;
plans are laid for next year, that sometime come to naught;
December is cold and drab, Christmas brings a little cheer;
summers memories rekindled, looking forward to next year.

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