Showing posts from July, 2019

Poetry: 'Hiraeth for the Hinterland' by Lee Prosser

I came close to drifting;
my clothes, hung out in their dull routine,
were lost sailors washed up against the shore—
left out in the rain like scrapyard hulks.

I was raised upon the rust of the dockland,
rivets and steel weighing me down.
Back then was a soundscape of hammering
and mealy food in our mouths.

Music was sparse
and not played by the fat-bellied musicians
that now riff away, in the same bars the workers would retire to.

The houses have all vanished
as they were built on quicksand. Everything there now is glass
forgetting the name of the land.

I remembered how thick the fog could be,
rolling in and erasing the foreshore. Blurring the waves
reminding about sailors longing for their harbour.

Last night I dreamt of the sea.
I awoke with salt crusted upon my skin,
the wind knowing my name, whispering—
we are all voices.

Lee Prosser, Llangynderyn, Wales, An ex-sailor and seadog,

Poetry: 'You Ask If We Were Fair To All Those Sailors' by Claire Walker

I wouldn’t say we lured them,
or coaxed them, like seals, to bob tricks
against their will, under a half-moon sky.

Our fable blew on prevailing winds, swept
to coastal ears, fed a harbour-full of minds.
In curiosity, they rowed offshore just for us.

Oh, how our eyes swam possibilities under their gaze.
Their feet followed our scales as if they could float,
heat rising from the deck as we bathed on cool rocks.

We roll waves in the palms of our hands,
hold a thousand fathoms of answers.
Look: Our tails sweep the horizon.

Art: 'Year End Dawn, Kingsbarns Beach, Fife' by Jonothan Potter

'Year End Dawn, Kingsbarns Beach, Fife' by Jonothan Potter
Jonothan Potter/ Artist/ Yorkshire/ @BJonothan

Poetry: 'A Navy of One (After Samuel Taylor Coleridge)' By Marc Woodward

In between and remote: vapour, sky, sea:
the pastel flag of some pelagic nation
whose burnished voyagers wander ghostly
over deep trenches below dark oceans -

chasms reserved for drowned seafarers,
Argonauts and admirals of the fleeting.
Adrift in a purgatory of sapphires
between elements and distant meetings.

Oh Mariner on your relentless quest!
What are you? Bedecked with an albatross?
A navy of one below tattered sails,

compass free, drifting to a dock unblessed
on the shores of all that's been known and lost.
Listen now! Wind chimed, the Kirk-top bell tolls.

By Marc Woodward / Poet / Devon @Marcomando

Film: Andy Jackson 'Kelp, Kelp, Glorious Kelp'

Watch this marvellous sequence of clips set to music by underwater cameraman and filmmaker Andy Jackson. Andy says he, 'created this on behalf of our kelp forests and all the animals that depend on them. To be used in social media in opposition to the proposals to harvest kelp in Scotland or anywhere else for that matter.'
Learn more about Andy's work here.
kelp, kelp, glorious kelp from Andy Jackson

Music licensed from, track "Beautiful Atmosphere Ambient" by 5VNDY.

Shoal Music: No.1 Neil Young’s ‘Midnight On The Bay’

The first of a regular feature where we reflect on the sea themed songs by a popular artists. Here music critic Tim Gadhorn digs up Neil Young's 1976 song Midnight On The Bay.
Neil Young is better known for his pastoral portraits of harvest moons, country homes & prairie winds but it should be no surprise, with a career filled with diversions, that his journey across country allows for the occasional coastal deviation.
Neil's love of the sea is apparent all the way from 1965s exotica influenced Kahuna Sunset, recorded with Buffalo Springfield, complete with wave & bird sounds to the nautical classics of Sail Away & Through My Sails. While 1974's Hawks & Doves has the pacific duo of Captain Kennedy and Coastline & 1995's Mirror Ball had I Am The Ocean and lest we forget that one of his most celebrated (and doom laden) albums was christened breezily On The Beach.
However the most consistent layover in coastal country must be the 1976 album Long May Yo…

Submissions Open For The Deck Hand now...


Happy Sunday from the Deck Hand


Poetry: 'Anti-Shanty' By Georgia Harvey

We all sing the songs of souls lost at sea
and preserve in musical amber memories.
But what of the land-bound in fishermen’s towns,
Now the fish are all dead and the industry’s down?

These boatmen more solid on liquid than land
on coal-littered beach front at sunset they stand.
Watch while their mistress is tossing her waves.
Greying and gloomy. She resents what she gave.

Now she casts off the covenant and keeps all the catch
and the sails in the harbour are folded or slack.
Lobster pots line up, empty in the sun,
while their salted-faced owner silently burn.

For it’s pints they are downing
to tribute the drowning
of another in whiskey not sea.
For they know where they’re going,
it’s their own path he’s showing
a way out of their own misery.

The swallows that flit through the cherry blossom trees
know the sea demands her tithe ev’ry fifteen years.
She lowers the pressure and hitches her skirt.
Swishing them wildly unbuttons her shirt,
booming with laughter she rolls on the shore
and d…

Happy Saturday from The Deck Hand #poetrysubmissions #poetrycommunity #seaside #nautical #literature


Word of The Day: Burian

Word of the Day is Burian. A Gaelic origin word that signifies the sea is coming in, with the noise akin to the roar of a bull.

Writing, Art, Music Submissions welcome


Submissions Open


The Deck Hand is a new journal of maritime art. A harbour for sea themed creative work of all kinds including; pelagic poetry, pirate prose, maritime music, aquatic art and a bountiful miscellany and creative flotsam and jetsam of all kinds. #sea #thedeckhand #poetry #illustration #ocean


Poetry: 'The Harbour' by Tom Harding

Late morning, the sun high above the harbour, all is quiet except for the ferry that docks every hour to collect tourists, and the occasional morning boat tugging slowly to its destination. The sea is calm and glinting softly and there is nothing turbulent, no breeze or murmur, no mention of the way the world really is, so you know you must try to keep it somehow, and watch it closely and hold it for all the moments that won’t be like this; the sweet industry of the harbour, its ferry and its boats, the waiting captain and idle walkers, talking busily in the middle of their lives.

Poem by Tom Harding from his collection Night Work