The Supply Deck of a Ship

Treasure on the Southern Moor; Chapter 5: Cleaning the Southern Moor; Pgs. 124-126

.     “And what is below us,” asked Adrianna. Her eyes looked down the open-shuttered hatch.
.     “The supply deck,” said Adrian. “Here, let me show you.”
.     He led her through the hatch in the floor and down a short flight of stairs to the next deck below. The light grew far less bright and far more mysterious. Some dim light filtered through from hatches above and let in duller shafts of sunlight that flitted to the floor. The only other source of light came from a few lamps lit throughout by those cleaning this deck, casting a murky yellow haze that flickered.
.     Adrianna also noticed that the roof was lower, and if she jumped, she could touch the ceiling with her fingertips. Running from bow to stern was a sort of path that cut its way through the supplies, stacked in wooden crates and other bundles. “It’s stuffy in here,” she whispered as she looked about, and her voice cut the silence.
.     “Just think how much stuffier it was in the storm, with all the hatches closed and the ship rocking as if it was going to capsize. But,” Adrian continued, “none of us had it nearly as bad as poor Jemmy Ducks. He lives on the floor below us right by the stable.”
.     “Does anyone live on this floor?” Adrianna asked.
.     “There are three small cabins near the bows,” said Adrian, “where the cook, carpenter, and cooper sleep. Other than that, this entire floor is just for stores and supplies. The replacement stove is over there, in case the first one is ruined somehow.” He pointed. “Here is extra dirt for the herb garden; we passed it in the forecastle. Many of the plants have died in the storms, but some have survived. And over there are the barrels of tea leaves. And that’s where we put the apple barrels. The water supply is over there, though we will need to refill most of those barrels when we reach land. One of them sprang a leak in the beginning of the storm when the barrel rolled right into the point of an axe, and though Mr. Perkins did his best at fixing it, we had already lost all the water from the barrel. The axe will be used on the livestock when we are ready to butcher them.” He continued leading Adrianna forward as he spoke. “Here are the other food bins, and over here is where I found spare rope the day Dick fell overboard. You can see most of our rope is used up, though we can obtain more in Spain or Portugal.”
.     “Oh, do stop,” said Adrianna as she put her hands to her head. “There is so much to sailing, and you’re making my head feel all swimmy!”
.     “That’s just what I thought on the first day of the storm,” said Adrian. “And I haven’t shown you the knives and sharp implements of the cooks that I almost fell into, or the tar barrel, sailor tools, fishing gear, washing supplies, or anything and everything that might be needed at sea.”

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Children’s Hour

‘Tis been a while since Conservative Cornerstones has posted a selection of its favorite children’s rhymes. I hope you enjoy!

Travel

The railroad track is miles away,
And the day is loud with voices speaking,
Yet there isn’t a train goes by all day
But I hear its whistle shrieking.

All night there isn’t a train goes by,
Though the night is still for sleep and dreaming,
But I see its cinders red on the sky,
And hear its engine steaming.

My heart is warm with the friends I make,
And better friends I’ll not be knowing,
Yet there isn’t a train I wouldn’t take,
No matter where it’s going.
~Edna St. Vincent Millay

Sea Fever

I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
And a gray mist on the sea’s face, and a gray dawn breaking.

I must go donw to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and th esea gulls crying.

I must go down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull’s way and the whale’s way where the wind’s like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover,
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick’s over.
~John Masefield

A Windy Day

Have you been at sea on a windy day
When the water’s blue
And the sky is too,
And showers of spray
Come sweeping the decks
And the sea is dotted
With little flecks
Of foam, like daisies gay;

When there’s salt on your lips,
In your eyes and hair,
And you watch other ships
Go riding there?
Sailors are happy,
And birds fly low
To see how close they can safely go
To the waves as they heave and roll.

Then, wheeling, they soar
Mounting up to the sky,
Where billowy clouds
Go floating by!
Oh, there’s fun for you
And there’s fun for me
At sea
On a windy day!
~Winifred Howard

They That Go Down to the Sea

They that go down to the sea in ships,
That do business in great waters;
These see the works of the Lord,
And his wonders in the deep.
~The Bible: from Psalm 107

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Joshua Reynolds on Conservative Cornerstones – Author of Children’s Books, Young Adult, Historical Fiction / Family Stories – Finding Conservative Thought in Olde Books. Check out my Authoring Conservatism Post. Look up my two books, The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor in my bookstore!

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Assessing Things Landward

For those who love Treasure on the Southern Moor. . .

Treasure on the Southern Moor; Chapter 8: Repairs and a Rest; Pgs. 191-194

.     The sun had come over the horizon and was beaming its rays upon water and land. Splash, splash, splash was the sound the oars were making as Mr. Toller related the story of the previous night’s events. Captain Underwood listened with great interest to the tale that was given him, watching as the ship’s boat took them closer and closer toward the Southern Moor.
.     “Well, well,” the captain said at the end, “that is a different turn. We will have to be more careful for sure, and of course I do apologize for hiring them in the first place and for the danger it put you all in. There was such a short time before we had to set sail, and I’m only all too sorry our suspicions about Mr. Northrup were true. At least,” spoken with relief, “Adrian and Adrianna are safe.” He went on, with some strain, “yet we are shorthanded now, in addition to needing repairs.”
.     They had by this time come up to the side of the Southern Moor, and a rope ladder, or Jacob’s ladder, was dangling down to receive them. The captain was first to ascend, coming up onto the main deck, and was greeted by Adrian and Adrianna and then by the loyal crew.
.     “We have been up all night and have nearly died,” said Adrianna in her father’s embrace, yet she was so tired from the night’s activities that she didn’t sound nearly as frightened as one may have thought.
.     “And it wasn’t so bad,” said Adrian. “We made it out safely.” His face turned sickly as he thought of the soldier and sailor who hadn’t. “But not everyone did,” was all he said aloud.
.     “We have been narrowly saved from disaster,” said the captain. “And I can only thank you all for your loyalty and to the Lord for His protection. I have a word to speak with the traitors before we need to discuss our plans, for our plight is plain. How are we to sail with more than half the crew unable or unwilling to lend a hand? This will have to be discussed among us, and since we are so few and every one of you has proved your loyalty with your lives, it is my wish that everyone have a say in the deciding. Yet it need not be discussed now aboard the Southern Moor. I suggest we partake of the victuals Robert Moore has prepared, and afterward go ashore where we can discuss our situation over solid ground with a larger meal.” He looked around at the tired faces of the crew. “It also appears that an hour’s sleep before we depart would not be amiss.”
.     Mr. Moore was nearly done with preparing breakfast, largely consisting of porridge, and everyone readily agreed to the proposed plan and sat down to eat. “Going ashore to Africa at last,” said Adrianna as she took her bowl of porridge. Steam was still rising from it.
.     “Aye,” said one of the two remaining loyal sailors. He said no more, but started humming the tune of an old sea song. Adrianna remembered that he was a sailor who had lived his whole life on the rolling of the stormy sea and therefore did not think of land as most landsmen think of it. She wondered if he had ever before faced a mutinous crew and what had happened if he had. Yet even sailors have a desire to visit land now and then, and Adrianna caught the glint in the man’s eye as he looked out over the shores.
.     When the light breakfast was over, during which Captain Underwood had had a strained discussion with the traitors (and he could get nothing out of them that Mr. Toller had not already told him), the crew of the Southern Moor took an hour’s sleep before preparing to go ashore. There was some discussion about what to do with the prisoners, locked below in the stable, and it was finally decided that Mr. Heath with one of his soldiers would stay behind to guard them, making sure they didn’t make any movements toward attempting escape. Of course, their hands were securely tied, but one can never be too sure. Mr. Heath was chosen because he was reliable to stay awake even after the rigorous night before, and it was promised he would have much time on land the following day.
.     “The oxen don’t seem to mind the fresher air in the officer’s cabins,” said Jemmy Ducks with a laugh. “It will do the traitors well to spend some time down there.”
.     The departing party assembled on the main deck and said goodbye for the day to Mr. Heath and his soldier who stayed behind with him. Some of the ship’s boats were lowered.

Audio Continuation of Story; Pgs. 194-196

You may purchase this book directly here at Xulon or here at Amazon

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Joshua Reynolds on Conservative Cornerstones – Author of Children’s Books, Young Adult, Historical Fiction / Family Stories – Finding Conservative Thought in Olde Books. Check out my Authoring Conservatism Post. Look up my two books, The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor in my bookstore!

Subscribe to my email list and receive my free eBook, titled Rhymes for a Child’s Picnic Lunch, plus email updates, writing news, and more!