Ode to My Bates (Boots)

Ode to my “Bates” (Boots)

10 years of service keepin’ on,
10 years of “lace you up before dawn”
Cried when Dad T, took you off. 2005.
–Ladderbacks now deep ripped your hide

You weren’t made for golf
Not really even Cohiba Puffs
But dying to self you come to life
& oh how you long for days without Night.

Honor for the salt that erodes.
Courage for the well-worn commode.
Commitment for Red, White’n Blue
There’s prayers for shipmates outside & Cold.

Boots warn when there’s war.
Before Christ no glimmer of More.
Just tucking and blousing, prospects of incoming.
fast is slow, slow is fast, so you tread.

Polish you, Boots? no, now you’re done.
Soles’ cracked, must find new ones.
But your laces that tied my life to the ship
Will be remembered when I come home for good.

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