The Band Known As Sea Water Bliss

The Band Known As Sea Water Bliss

Illustration by Liz Syrnick

This poem, which my father composed in the early 1980s and tinkered with off and on for the next few years, certainly made an impression on me – as a grown-up I borrowed its title for the name of my band.

IT
was
night
an’ nothing was right
I tell you, Miss
the very first practice
of
the band known as Sea Water Bliss
begins
this
tale
of my sojourn in jail

THIS story I’ve gotta spill
(an’
I
will)
concerns creatures that lurk
amid the murk
those
be-boppers
of
the
deep
who haunt my sleep
’til I utter harsh cries
tear at my eyes
moan
an’ gnash
groan
an’
thrash
an’ fill the jail
with the shouts of my hell

THE
fact
of
the
matter
is
while in show biz
for a time
I was engaged to find the rhyme
an’ set the swing
of those who sing
and play
all day
beneath the sea
so help me
Miss
it once was my loss
to be the boss
of the band known as Sea Water Bliss

FROM morning
’til night
it was non-stop blowing
(the bubbles rose ’til I thought it was snowing)
and the awful wail
of the six-foot snail
drilled in my ear
an’
I
hear
that sound to this very day
an’ oft-time pray
for my memory to fail
to
forget that noise
that shatters my poise
the
sickening
wail
of
Sammy the Snail

THE doctors tell me
to let it be
to rest and relax
and forget that sax
but
I
find
that I cry
as the night wends by
I cry
an’ I
cry
oh God let me die

BUT
he
won’t
and please note
Sammy ain’t the worst
of those I curse
there’s that tuna
called Oona
who played her bass
in that undersea place
in a manner so crass
an’ lacking in class
that I’d start to whimper
an’
shudder and shake
to my heels I’d take
like a faint-hearted hake
oh, how that simpering bore
could make her bass snore
no more, no more
oh please, no more

BUT why
do I
prolong this tale of woe?
’cause Joe
who has Doc at the front of his name
sez this is how I must play the game
an’ if I tell my tale again
an’ again
maybe even again and again
someday soon
like tomorrow noon
I’ll
be
sane
the madness will wane
I’ll again be healthy
(tho’ not ever wealthy
’cause Joe with his bill
will make my bank account ill)
an’ I laff
an’ laff
and the sound falls
flat!
as a sea-gull calls
splat!
take that
ya dirty rat
take
that
an’
that
an’
that…

A DAY
has faded away
an’ Doc Joe has come and gone
with his needle of song
an’ now I can have my say
as long as I stay
calm
cool
don’t act the fool
so
I raise my right palm
an’ aver
(as I sit in stir)
I’ll be as good
as I should
an’ recollect
in full control of my intellect
what happened to me
deep down in the sea
where those finny creatures
with their instruments an’ funny features
made
a
mad
man
of
me

SO it is
I laugh
as I recall
that fancy dress ball
where the sea-lion’s calf
was sucking her thumb
while her mom
was vyin’
to bash every drum
an’ Suzie Eight-Arms
now there was a player with charms
as she sat playing pool
that fool
on a baby grand
with every hand
filled with a cue
an’ she’d tell you
she wasn’t uptight
’cause she’d sink an 8-ball tonight
was it any wonder I went mad at the sight!

THAT group
ah, what a group
’tis no wonder I was thrown for a loop
an’ wished they were a soup
a nice fish chowder
with all their parts ground into powder
an’ packed in tins
stored in far-off bins
’til a demand was found
to strew them on the ground
so I could
(an’ I would)
walk on ’em
stomp on ’em
grind ’em to dirt
to alleviate my hurt
but
I
digress
I
must
continue
must
confess
tell the tale to the end
so maybe they’ll send
me
to some quiet place
where chickens race
and the nearest sea
is a million miles from me

I LASTED three weeks
maybe four
(definitely no more)
then I went bonkers
zonkers
flipped out
began to shout
attacked every fish
with a broken porcelain dish
slashing left an’ right
on that fateful night
an’ screamed out my wish
that every fish
would go far away
an’ never again play
in any jazz band
at sea or on land
an’
I
left
my mark
on the hammerhead shark
who sang through his nose
an’ strummed his guitar
while quaffing great gobs
from a mason jar
an’ then
to a chorus of sobs
I gutted poor Suzie
making her woozy
an’ was tryin’ to impale
that sax-blowing snail
with a finishing nail
when they grabbed me
cut short my mad dance
through that blue-green sea
gave me no chance
refused me bail
threw me in jail
said I was sick
an’ in jail I would stick

BUT time passes away
or so they say
bad feelings subside
with the ebb and flow of the tide
an’ if I mind
my p’s and my q’s
I might hear the news
that I can go
but if so
this I really must know…
why does my good friend Doc Joe
say with a slightly sinister hiss
that he really does miss
the band known as Sea Water Bliss?

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2 thoughts on “The Band Known As Sea Water Bliss

  1. Pingback: My father, Roger Warner. « Stuff I Done Wrote – The Michael A. Charles Online Presence

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