Photo: Paul Jones
Mavis Jones is a West Coast writer who
spends much of her time on the Sechelt Peninsula. Her short fiction
and poetry have been published in a number of journals and anthologies
and have won various awards. A first book of poetry Her Festival
Clothes was published by McGill-Queens in 2001.
The Norwegian Star
A cruise ship glides into the sumptuous bay
at sunrise, dropping her anchor as easily
as the morning paper. Frigate birds come in,
wheeling over her decks and finely crafted
superstructure, almost as attuned to wind, currents,
ocean moods and surges as the birds themselves.
All day the launches ply the bay, carrying
passengers to local markets frivolous
as the graphics on the liner's hull.
Brown pelicans wait on a small rock promontory
and puffer fish in a protected pool go about
their collegiate business. The sun moves over
the ship, lighting some cabins, moving others
into shadow. Legions of waiters, barmen, chefs
and cleaners labour the day away, thinking
of Manila or Marseilles. Slowly the sun moves
down to the sea again in hibiscus colour,
the puffer fish grow still. The Norwegian Star
departs for the next perfect sunrise.
Pelicans fly across the waning moon.
One by one bats and the lesser stars come out.