Let This Vessel Rest

There once was a sailboat on a mooring in Weekhawken. Some might call it project boat. It was not that. 2018-01-11 17.06.23 (1)

A rusting engine block balanced in the cockpit,  a cylinder head on the bow. The boom was connected to the goose-neck but was propped up on the port side of the binnacle. All the cabin windows were agape, as was the companionway. There was no cabin sole. Instead, the cabin was filled with ice and snow.

2018-01-11 16.44.23Neglected tools, a cooler, rotten wood, and litter were piled or scattered where none should be. Her hull was cracked and worn.

No wheel. No sheets. No sails.

It had broken free, a shredded 3/8″  inch line that had once secured it to the ground tackle and now hung in tatters near the bowsprit.

I touched her hull but she barely twitched. “I am tired, hurt, and scared,” she said in a rattled whisper.

She was weighed down by generations of neglect and good intentions. She wanted it to be all over, to be put to rest. The ice in the Hudson heard her and tried to help, only to be plucked from obliviation by good intentions once again.

This video shows the vessel being towed out of Liberty Landing Marina, perhaps to her final resting place. (It’s a Downeast 32.)


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