|With his family, Alan Ward owns and operates the intriguingly beautiful Blue Ridge Pottery. Set within a mountain hollow of unspoiled forested vistas, the shop is a center of serenity. Fountains, artful tanks of tropical fish, landscaped gardens of natural wildflowers and native trees, an antique carriage, and ponds grace the workshop and store shelves of varied handmade wares.|
Some nights the moon And stars rise, Encircle 'round my mast, While I watch lights Of distant cities peek On my horizon. I have watched them come Those other ships. Forms in the night Some close, some far, But most have slipped the wake Of my horizon. Some nights the fog And darkness come, Enfold around so close, I cannot see those things Which lie beyond, On my horizon. I have watched it stretch To points beyond What some call God; Now close, now far, Beyond the end Of my horizon.
Seven nine, eight three, eight five, And cries of laughter, Smiles on faces, White knuckles on a helm And a feeling Few can understand. Lines taut, Sails straining To gather that last ounce Of power from the wind, And seven tons of boat Hang, At some precarious angle On the tips of your fingers. You turn Hard to the wind And tiny drops of water Splash up And cross the windward rail; Shouting their joy By glinting sunlight Back towards the cockpit Then leave their scent, A salty taste, Upon your lips. You have caught it This fever of the sea. The wind has tossed your hair; The sun has warmed your back; And the sea Embraced you to her breast. You'll love and live and fear her From now on. She has made love to you, And left you wanting more. You'll never be Just quite the same Again.
|ABOUT THE AUTHOR: "Born in the Welsh seaport of Newport in 1943, Alan spent his early years in the coastal areas and valley towns of Wales. In 1950 his parents joined the many post-war immigrants seeking a new life in the Americas, and moved to Canada. At twelve he had built his first boat, a jury rig of canvas and green saplings. Throughout his teenage years he was constantly found canoe-tripping through the Northern Ontario wilderness. By twenty-two he had built two boats, one a thirty footer, and was spending summers and weekends cruising the Great Lakes. His Master's degree in Planning and Urban Design provided the basis for twelve years in the consulting business. However, in 1979 Alan became disenchanted with the yuppie life and went sailing for two years aboard his 37' sloop throughout the Caribbean. Time to think and the experience of that cruise provided the basis for many of the works in..." Reflections of the Sea and Other Secret Places, a collection of verse from which the above two poems are excerpted, available for purchase at Blue Ridge Pottery, Stanardsville, VA. E-mail address: Pots4U2@aol.com|
Slightly modified photographs reprinted with permission from a monthly edition of the New York Institute of Photography's website. © NYI, all rights reserved.Where the heck am I? -- Beam me back home
Midi music file: "They Call The Wind Mariah" from "Paint Your Wagon"
"On My Horizon" and "Laughter on the Wind" © Alan Ward, 1997. All rights reserved.