By Walt Whitman
Wild, wild the storm, and the sea high running,
Steady the roar of the gale, with incessant undertone muttering,
Shouts of demoniac laughter fitfully piercing and pealing,
Waves, air, midnight, their savagest trinity lashing,
Out in the shadows there milk-white combs careering,
On beachy slush and sand spirts of snow fierce slanting,
Where through the murk the easterly death-wind breasting,
Through cutting swirl and spray watchful and firm advancing,
(That in the distance! is that a wreck? is the red signal flaring?)
Slush and sand of the beach tireless till daylight wending,
Steadily, slowly, through hoarse roar never remitting,
Along the midnight edge by those milk-white combs careering,
A group of dim, weird forms, struggling, the night confronting,
That savage trinity warily watching.
My in-laws picked up my children for a couple of days of camping after lunch today (and after younger son's orthodontist appointment, which ran over an hour as they decided to do x-rays to figure out why his adult incisor hasn't moved down to take the place of the baby tooth and gave him the unwelcome news that if it hasn't budged in six weeks, they will pull the baby tooth next to it). We all went out to California Tortilla (again! but everyone likes it!) and tried to make sure the kids had their bathing suits, their toothbrushes, their Game Boys, their stuffed snakes (because who can go camping without a stuffed snake), enough underwear for a week and all the rest.
So my husband and I had a quiet child-free evening drinking Bailey's and watching Visions of Scotland on PBS. It was marvelous, even with the pledge drive interruptions, and I am very sad that the PBS web site does not list the musical credits. Now I can't decide whether to campaign to go to Scotland or Ireland next, or southwest England. I need someone to hire me to write a travel book on the British Isles, dammit! Speaking of which, my son's orthodontist is evidently an science buff, as they have Discover, Psychology Today and the like in the office. While my son was getting his braces realigned, I read "Mystery Man of Stonehenge" about the archer discovered in Wiltshire in Smithsonian and "The Anglo-Saxon Prince" about the seventh-century burial site in Archaeology and the latter was so interesting that I asked the receptionist if I could borrow their photocopier and make a copy. Then my older son and I sat there discussing Stonehenge and everyone else in the office looked at us as if we were total geeks. Which we are, heh.
Here one finds treasure from Spanish and American shipwrecks off the Atlantic coast...
...and from ships built across the Atlantic. These are from the wreck of the White Star Line's R.M.S. Republic...
...as is this deck light.
From some of the earliest colonial ships, a cannon and shot brought up from offshore.
Weapons, buttons, dice and other artifacts from the Revolutionary and Civil War eras.
Items from the wreck of the Faithful Steward.
From a Native American boat, a club made from a walrus penis bone. Yes really. The Eskimos called it an Oosik.
Souvenirs from Sea Shell City of the upstairs museum -- a treasure box and a wreck painted on a cowrie shell.