Sunday, October 14, 2012

Rocky Neck

September 20, 2012
Rocky Neck, Gloucester, Massachusetts


All that is told of the sea has a fabulous sound
to an inhabitant of the land,
and all its products have a certain fabulous quality,
as if they belonged to another planet,
from sea-weed to a sailor's yarn,
or a fish-story.

   HDT, Cape Cod

Late that afternoon, we visited Rocky Neck, on the far side of Gloucester Harbor, to have dinner at The Rudder.
The Neck is yet another Art Colony, though it seems somewhat subdued at this time of year. All this Beauty in the studio windows, and most of the Beholders have gone home.

You park in a little lot at the beginning of the Neck, then it’s a pleasant stroll to the restaurant at the far end.

As soon as I got out of the car, I looked up to see a familiar ghost on the horizon –
The Ardelle,  on an evening cruise in Gloucester Harbor.
Even at a distance, her profile is distinctive.

Soon, I thought, I will be out there too !

We were, as usual, unfashionably early, and the restaurant was not quite open. Mom elected to hang out and wait on a convenient bench.
Rick and I kept walking, to the very end of the Neck.
Past working-boats hitched up like so many horses.

Here  at the end is the Gloucester Marine Railways yard, full of interesting vessels in various stages of repair.


Huge sailing-ships
alien-looking derricks and cranes,
steel hulks encrusted with barnacles, and mighty chains holding them

Ropes that make my shoelaces look like mere thread  

things were definitely on a different scale here.
We were like elves wandering about in a giant’s fabulous workshop.
If these vessels could talk, what fish-stories they could tell !

The restaurant opened for the evening, and we sat down to a fantastic dinner. It’s the sort of place where the neighbors come to dine, and park in their own special spot.

Back in Rockport, I was settling in for the night.
One glance out the slider -- and I was cramming shoes on again,
and hustling down to the beach.
... Sailor’s Delight - !

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