Birthday Boots!

My sea boots are ten years old today!

Now, this is a really strange post I grant, but I feel a terrible sadness at the idea that they will soon be condemned to the deep… Yes, I shall sink them with some rusty, old anchor chain when I finally sail from Borka, into the deep Baltic.

I decided to write a poem in the form of a eulogy.


These boots are meant for sailing, and that’s just what they’ve done!

Eulogy for sea-boots

From Djibouti to Lapland you have carried me…

In winter’s Eastern Mediterranean and Suez Canal, down exotic Red Sea, kissing volcanoes and coral reefs… Egypt, Sudan and Eritrea, places from school atlases brought alive.

The Aegean, with its bad-tempered Meltemis that slash down from Asia Minor, turning the placid summer sea into a raging monster… You were there.

Feckless Ionian so tempting and yet ruthless with fools, to the tricky Straits of Messina, brooding whirlpools that thwarted Odysseus.The moody Tyrrhenian with its Italian lee-shore and rocky island paradises, Procida, Capri, Ponza – names from legends… nowhere to run.

You were there too.

Off Langeroog – Version 2

Boots Ahoy!

The howling Bonifacio Strait, where gales rage betwixt Corsica and Sardinia then northwards through the Ligurian Sea and the sly Gulf of Genova, brooding under mountain storms. And all the while there under my feet.

Even when I slept standing up…

Through endless rivers and canals, from Marseilles to Dunkirk, from London to Abingdon, into the heart of Albion. Even on bicycle through sloshing winter rain into Walton on Thames,

to sit with housewives and new friends…

in trendy cafes.

Surreptitiously placing under coffee table so as not to offend…

Version 2

Boots Aloft!

To the East Anglian Coast and the Netherlands with her waterways and huge skies, stomping Amsterdam, through freezing snow-filled streets, beside fragrant cafes that have no coffee.

Romancing Helgoland and the Elbe, oil-soaked from damaged gearbox, and yet true, never slipping, never feeling the wet of a sea coming on board.

And onward, Kiel Canal and the mighty Baltic with her angry steep waves and endless rocky shoals, where the Vikings left and plundered south. Miles of tiny anchorages, littered among the islands, rarely a craft to be seen.

Those are the places, we’ve been…


About Viking Queen

I am a sailor and I live on my boat 'Free'. I have no home but originate from Tyneside. I have no allegiance, just a desire to do no harm and live with courage and an open heart.
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29 Responses to Birthday Boots!

  1. Claus says:

    Love your writing Viking Queen 😀

  2. Loco Steve says:

    Hi Poppy hope all is well with you X
    You should mail them to:- Boothill Cemetery,
    Tombstone, AZ 85638, United States

    • Viking Queen says:

      Very droll big boy! No a sailors burial is more apt. Hope you do the same for me when that time comes around.

  3. says:

    Save their tongues & lacesSent from my Huawei Mobile

  4. Viki Moore says:

    Great poem! What wonderful adventures! Are they Dubarry’s? I love mine. x

  5. Bancroft says:

    Great poem! We went back and finished the Camino this spring! Hope to see you in Maine one day!!! The Old Couple

  6. michael says:

    Hi Poppy

    they look to have years of life left in them yet . I shall always think of you with your boots on

    take care and still remember to use the wellies !!

    lots of love mike

    Date: Mon, 13 Jun 2016 16:45:55 +0000 To:

    • Viking Queen says:

      I thought you’d reply! What was it you called me? ‘Poppy in Boots?’. Slightly better than ‘Pussy in boots’, I suppose, although probably not for you!!!😈!

  7. woody1884 says:

    Would you like us to save them for you? Appreciate there is little room on your boat but, throwing away? It’s something I find really hard to do. Having said that, I think your form of throwing is perfect. Perhaps some little fishes will make their home inside them?

    • Viking Queen says:

      Where’s you sense of the romantic?😉 I’m supposed to be a Femme fatale! Anyway thanks for sentiment, I do love to be a drama queen!

  8. woody1884 says:

    Woody1884 is me, Pamela!!

  9. Christian says:

    Poor boots we knew them well, sure that there must be some life left in them yet perhaps one last summer, lovely poem perhaps print off put into a bottle and bury with the boots.(throw into sea) you never know what could happen.

  10. Lynda hulme says:

    Loved the poem Poppy. Sorry we’ve been quiet for awhile. We’ve now moved back to the UK. We’ll keep in touch. I admire you SO much Poppy. Hope we meet up again. GOd bless. Xx Lynda and Tony (Knightingale)

    • Viking Queen says:

      How can I forget you and Knightingale (Great name!) Long time since Carloforte, heh? Lovely to hear from you big sister!

  11. Lucy says:

    Nooo, I remember them…. and you always wearing them, except in the steamy Kalamata summertime…but without eachother? …narps, can’t picture it. Love from Lucy in Lefkada (I’m captain alliteration today 🙂 )

    • Viking Queen says:

      You’re rocking me girl! Coming on all literary like (hows that for an alliteration? Maybe more ‘illiteration!’

      • Lucy says:

        D’yanno I thought it was spelled with an ‘i’ but spellcheck thought otherwise…and as it’s not a word I write often I went with it….now I’ll never forget, ha! xx

      • Viking Queen says:

        It is Lucy! I was trying to make a new word inferring that I was illiterate!

      • Lucy says:

        Pfffftt!! LOL, it was early, I obviously wasn’t quite awake, xxx

      • Viking Queen says:

        I know the feeling! He he! Great to hear from you again kidda!

  12. says:

    Hello Poppy, Fascinating words but must the boots leave you? They’re obviously good friends! Are you harbour bound as in your last email, if so I’m sure you’ll find much to fill both time and thoughts. I just hope your “summer” rises to the description and experience of it we had, long ago it seems. Winter garb is well the norm nowadays! However, there’s much to ponder and keep the spirits up! Am sure yours are well afloat as ever and my greetings are warm!

    Love, Ruth

    • Viking Queen says:

      Hello dear Ruth! Yes…. Port bound in the glorious Swedish sunshine! Not going anywhere until next year. No problem, just taking it easy as usual! Hope you are well and we must meet up next time I’m back in Blighty! Love from Poppy

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