West Coast Fury - Paint Swatch Contest Honourable Mention

West Coast Fury - Paint Swatch Contest Honourable Mention

​by Baxter Huston



What happens when the world loses blues and turns to greys?

What makes the sky and mountains ochre, makes horizon haze?

What gives the smell of ocean, makes the air all wet and cold?

I guess a storm is coming, guess we’re entering autumn’s days.


One might assume the sun will rise again somewhere out East

But given that the light right now is ravaged by the beast

A storm is surely on our scent and soon will beat our doors

So moor the troller, close the shed, start cooking for a feast.


We might as well just hunker down and play a game of whist

It helps us keep the fears at bay while pummelled by the fist

And laughter drowns the mighty sound of howling fury’s scream

Nature’s chaos is dispersed by making mental lists.


Clouds as black as tiles on the rooftop at midnight,

Stark contrast to the ocean’s techno-tan off to the right,

As crippled light extinguishes but peeks beneath the clouds,

Will mirror my rear-window as it slips right out of sight.


It’s mighty humbling to be witness to the might of wind.

The mortal thinks it might be better if he’d never sinned.

It makes the warmth of kith and kin more precious to your soul,

Gives meaning to hot cocoa and a shutter tightly pinned.


The crippled old man’s shoulders say tomorrow will be worse

and goddamn if it’s not my night to be the old guy’s nurse.

But even his morose old voice is better than the howl

of elementals evil, hard, and throwing down their curse.


Every time I wonder if we’ll live it out this one more time.

Each time I wonder if we’re being punished for the crime

Of living for the fishing and bouncing on the swell

And thinking we’re in heaven on the troller’s smell and grime.


Ah, well, we’ve fended off the monster rising from the chuck

More times than all the toes lost to the diabetic’s luck.

Though this might be the night we face the Kraken at his worse,

Just deal the cards, and pass the jug, ‘cause we don’t give a dang.