About this book

These poems are about boats. When my mother was about thirteen, her neighbor gave her a sunken skiff, but she raised it, caulked it, and launched it onto Seldovia Slough, where she fished and gave other children rides. On an excurson with “Cricket, his grandmother, and a couple other kids,” they were swept out into Cook Inlet, so she beached the skiff and they walked back home. It was swept away before she could return to get it.

These poems are not about rafts or barges. These poems are also not about ships, but about the more human-scaled watercraft called boats. These words are used loosely, but in general you can put a boat on a ship, but you cannot put a ship on a boat.

This book continues my argument that the subjects of poetry are not exclusively deep emotions, but that deep emotions may be our responses to common things that show our history and creativity.

The image on the cover is a watercolor that I made of the boatyard at Kenai Packers, from a photo by my brother, Terry M. Sharp.

Links and shortcuts

In any page, you can click on or touch links to jump around in this book.

You may find the following keyboard equivalents to be convenient. Here I use the symbol ⌥ for the option key on Mac/OS or the alt key on Windows, ⇧ for the shift key, and ⏎ for the return (enter) key. Arrow keys are ◄ (left), ► (right), ▲ (up), and ▼ (down).

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The author

Tom Sharp, self portrait

Tom Sharp is a Native American of Aleut heritage, a member of Seldovia Village Tribe. He is the author of numerous books, including Spectacles: A Sampler of Poems and Prose, Taurean Horn Press (ISBN 0-931552-10-9), a novel, Hans and the Clock (ISBN 979-8580172484), The book of science, SciFi (ISBN 979-8694935210), Things People Do (ISBN 979-8687425568), The book of beliefs (ISBN 979-8683553593), The I Ching (ISBN 979-8573510620), Images (ISBN 979-8577560515), Aleut Artifacts (ISBN 979-8575608998), Aleut Words (ISBN 979-8582103394), and First Nations (ISBN 979-8682924769).

Tom Sharp’s initials