The Dying Love of Ensign Bee
Listening to silence atop a hill
The boy holds a cloth in the wind.
Its dance like fire never to repeat,
Spirit captured in his hand.
Lighted by youth his mind is alive;
Death is no place in his thoughts
As the shores below celebrate renewal,
A rhythm of life never lost.
The water speaks softly in shimmering light,
His mind captured by her lure.
Shown a ship on her back with its sails to the wind,
Its rigging taunt and secure.
On this hill in the west, near the shore of his land,
The boy grew enchanted with the sea.
Its freedom, its flow, its windblown mist
Inspired love in the boy named Bee.
As the seasons passed Bee would return.
As a man now he stood on the hill;
In service to his land as an Ensign on a ship,
His yearning now was fulfilled.
Holding his hand at this moment in time,
Elinor, his wife, felt alone.
Months would pass before Bee would return
From the sea that he called his home.
But the beautiful water which gave him such peace
When Bee was just a boy,
Became violent with swales and squalls on their course,
Pirating his joy.
The love he had for the endless wonder
Of the sea which had so been his life
Seemed dying now and cold and wet.
He longed to be with his wife.
But months would pass and days were hard;
His desire for her would burn.
The sea, his friend, but his love no more,
Thwarted his return.
Yet finally, late one winter month,
His passage for home was complete.
Elinor’s eyes and heart and soul —
They were all he yearned to see.
The watery mantle, which gave him life,
Now spoke to this sailor with rain,
As it told him something in a mysterious way
Of a tempest and terrible pain.
His heart grew heavy on entering his house;
Crude silence did him surround.
The scent of Elinor was absent from here,
Yet an infant’s blanket he found.
Looking for her with a frantic pace
He made his way to the hill.
The place they loved as husband and wife
Would be a place that she loved still.
As he climbed it higher his memories rushed
To meet his life again.
Those years of love for the sea were lost,
Yet she would always be his friend.
His knees grew weak as he drew near a rock
Where Elinor held his hand.
The place where his life with her began
Was now the place where it would end.
Two crosses there upon that spot
Lay quietly by the sea.
The larger one bore Elinor’s name,
The smaller one read “Bee.”
Listening to silence, atop a hill,
A man holds a blanket in the wind.
Its dance like fire, never to repeat,
Their spirit captured in his hand.
Levi Hill — Copyright 2002