Fog-man

A woman disguised as a man to get away from her home and into a life she feels more comfortable with. In the process she ends up saving some of the ship members.

From bow to stern, softly sweeping
Thoughts postponed caressing, creeping
A man, but not a man
Drifting from the silent shallows
Come the images of less gentle gallows
And  a girl who thought "I can"

In cabin's embrace, warily weeping
Thoughts postponed jumping, jolting
Pouring from the Fog-Man's eyes
Teardrops in the slimy sea
Like one woman unfit to mildly marry
Enduring under a vessel's sighs

From stern to bow, morbidly mopping
Thoughts postponed slowing, stopping
Behind the eyes of fog once more
Before responding to a calling captain
"I took some coffee; 'twas nearly napping"
Refusing to look at the floor

In hat and boots, staring suspiciously
Captain Jack looked merely manly
And the Fog-Man postponed that, too
Until Jack nodded, finally faulting
And the Fog-Man went back to water-wiping
Eyes like ice with dew

Come bell we find him tiredly tumbling
Postponing thoughts or ranting, rumbling
Until the day they came to shore
He found his stomach steady but stalling
Breakfast, lunch, no food falling
Wishing still to have more

In night cap and hammock, softly snoring
Dreaming a regular life— brief, boring
Textbooks, playing, courtesy, Red Rover
Never moving, never at risk, constantly curtseying
Always on the move, always visiting, and—damn—dancing!
Terrifying torture until the song is over!

Then nightmare over, blessed sea singing
Siren on the rocks; thrilling, tempting
Fog-Man woke to an empty cabin
The song an echo— no, revoltingly real
Running to deck, Fog-Man sees a lady, her singing surreal
The sailors are stripping, ready to dive in

The Fog-Man forgets her own despicable disguise
Avoiding the siren's eerie eyes
She jumps after the captain
Holding him and tying him to the ready rig
Before diving after Billy Big
Knife in hand, she kills the siren

The following silence meant madness
Even she suffering sadness
But she went to her trunk to change
Ignored the flowers and frills
And to avoid wet clothes consenting chills
She wore a tunic suffering stains

Back on deck, bow to stern, silently sweeping
Thoughts postponed, caressing, creeping
A man, but not a man
Drifting towards a cruel crew
And an old regular rule
But knowing she could do what no other can

From stern to bow, merely mopping
Thoughts postponed slowing, stopping
Behind the eyes of fog once more
She shook her head, simply smirking
Knowing herself to be a woman working
Despite what was done before

In hat and boots, staring silently
The captain looked down and up; hellish or heavenly?
And the Fog-Man simply continued
Until Jack nodded, mind made up
"Stay as you will; but no scissors now, have hair for me"

The End

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