Poem by Ivor Gurney


A View of the Bay in Winter. Henry Martin Gasser (1909-1981)

The Uplands

Heaven blew clear of cloud, the beech
Hung full of stars, still or quaking,
The cold wind shivered my warm touch,
Ice in the white road crackled breaking.

It was an icy night of wonder,
Swift came the flurries of snow’s spite,–
All were asleep; beasts down in under
Depths of earth; safe from such night.

Songs of these hills when most happy
The day was for our Western men–
Sea songs, tunes of war and company–
Beaten by cold, my mouth cried again:

Echoing from the barn walls, Western
Songs fitting such place, racked and rang–
Great stars in their clear pattern
Smote the air with their fire’s clang.

And hiding the minutes from my frozen
Mind–at last came to Birdlip Corner–
Where the far lights of Gloucester showing,
Called me down, between Coopers and Chosen,
Where the lowland air was warmer,
And a fire waited, with tea things, blazing.

~ Ivor Gurney,   (1890–1937)

Ivor Gurney, born in Gloucester, UK, was a composer, poet and wounded WWI veteran. This week’s poem 
was discovered by Peter Anastas of Gloucester, MA. 


On Thanksgiving Day 
Enduring Gloucester’s contributors share our gratitude
Gloucester Harbor  Julius Delbos (1879-1970)

“I am grateful for being so warmly embraced by my many new friends in this wonderful city.”
Bing McGilvary

“I am grateful for the sense of community Gloucester provides where it seems, it is true, everybody knows your name.  When conducting day to day activities, there is not a day that goes by where I inevitably see someone I know and exchange a greeting.”
Patti Page

“On Thanksgiving and every day, I am grateful for all the beauty that is Gloucester, from the colors of Spring to the magic Winter brings. Above all, I’m thankful for all the friends who seem to have an endless amount of joy to share.”
Laurel Tarantino

                                     photos by Laurel Tarantino

“I thought I came to Gloucester for the light and the sea, for the art and the music.  But the people I found here, tenacious and unpretentious, welcomed me into their true community and made me want to stay. This place matters to me.”   
Lois A. McNulty


“I give thanks today and every day for the privilege of living in this beautiful place, this real city, which we must never allow to be taken from us by those who would remake it in their own image.”    
Peter Anastas

Poem by HB

“The Tin Building, Commercial Street, the Fort, Gloucester, MA” by Hilary Frye (HB)

The Tin Building, Commercial Street, the Fort, Gloucester, MA by Hilary Frye (HB)


Fear the Clown

He is us all

His tears’


Plays on down

His long sad cheeks

Burning through

His Enormous

Smiling lips

And quench

His drowning heart

It is time to sleep

Now,long and bold

Raise the dead cats

From the streets

And muster eunuch dogs

To wail

This inhospitality,

This rudeness

This day in


~ HB

Hilary Frye is a Gloucester native who thrives on adventure, usually involving salt water. 
She is a certified sailing instructor who volunteers with Sail GHS. She writes poetry 
as HB.

Higher Love by Laurel Tarantino

Photo by Laurel Tarantino

A new entry from Loving and Leaving the Fort

17 November 2014

Why do people move? I imagine there are a lot of reasons. Your job relocated you. You got approved for that mortgage and are finally going into your dream home. School. The landlord is selling the house, or perhaps, you’re simply ready for a change.

Whatever the reason, it can be exciting, sometimes traumatic and I believe in all cases exhausting. For me, it was all three.

The trauma and excitement were rolled up in one. A new adventure was before me, but I was leaving behind a place that held me in an embrace that comforted away the worries of the day.

I found myself recently trying to comfort a friend who couldn’t see beyond the sadness of a break-up that left her torn and heart broken. Of course there are the old clichés, “There’s plenty of fish in the sea.” “There’s always sunshine after rain.” “When one door closes another one opens.” These are just a few that come to mind. Being there for your friends is the important thing. You won’t be able to take away the pain in that moment; they have to go through the mourning process in their own time. What I have found, through personal experience, is the next love is a higher love. It has to be, or you’ll keep looking back, idealizing, instead of being in the present. After living on my own for a couple years, how I loved the sound of my own laughter. I’d learned I could enjoy myself without depending on someone else, and then along came Jimmy who also appreciates the simple pleasures that make up each day, my “Higher Love”

It’s been the same leaving Fort Square. I’ve enjoyed making it my home for the past 23 years, but I’m moving into the future knowing I will find the next great chapter in my life.

I spent the 80s in Mt. Washington Valley. I was kind of fresh out of High School, embarking on what, I didn’t know, but I was ready, ready to become an adult and see something different. Not far from home, Gloucester, but a complete change from sea and shoreline.

Photo by Laurel Tarantino

I’d made a good choice for myself. I found the mountains to be as powerful as the ocean. I’d made it “Over the Bridge,” and I was hooked. How breathtaking to see Mt. Washington topped with snow in the morning light. Add the beautiful colors of autumn to the picture and you find yourself parked, taking it all in and perhaps being late for work.

The seasons are so giving in the mountains. Ah, to hear the rush of snow melt in a brook along a woodsy path. The awakening shock of diving into a hidden pool formed by those rushing waters on a hot Summer’s day, the smell of cider and those of country fairs with the promise of warmth in a barn full of big brown-eyed cows and bleating goats. Even winter doesn’t seem as harsh. Snowfall is invited; it adds its own magic.

Sail GHS

Sail GHS Enlivens the Harbor
by Hilary Frye, with Patti Page
                                                                                                                                                            photos by Hilary Frye

…the sky, a besmudged cauldron, leaking sudden shafts of sunlight; the water, tossing quicksilver. Like crisp white cat’s ears, the sails pop up, and the near-empty harbor dances to life.

This was the scene on Gloucester Harbor on October 30, the last day of sailing for 2014. Sail GHS will be back on the water in the middle of March.

In 2008, Patti Page introduced scholastic sailing to our city. With a harbor as beautiful as ours, she envisioned a high school sailing team as a shining asset for this historic port.
With three donated C420 sailboats, and the quiet authority and guidance of Dr. Damon Cummings, she began to build a racing team
Page engaged Guy Fiero, a canny, creative instructor, with many years of experience, as the coach. Scouring the environs of Cape Ann, she banded together a crew of intrepid high school -aged sailors who took their place as the new sailing team, Sail GHS, in the Mass Bay League racing organization.
The competitive season for scholastic sailing is early spring, when conditions are cold,  stormy and unpredictable.  Sailing is arduous at best. Page spent many an afternoon with icy winds, stinging rains, and waves breaking over the bow of her 13 foot whaler, tending her skittering flock.
By diligent fund-raising, chasing grants and soliciting donations, she equipped her team with life vests, dry suits, chase boats, insurance, league fees, and a coach, with no cost to its young members.
The Dusky foundation, ever- generous with its community enrichment efforts, endorsed the conspicuous success of the program by donating, (in conjunction with Brown’s Yacht Yard,) six brand new C420s and a fully equipped chase boat.
In 2012,  Page motivated the city to appropriate funds to replace its derelict floats at the head of the harbor with a new state-of-the-art system. The  Sail GHS racing fleet now shares the floats with the Cape Ann YMCA summer program.
With persistent nurture, Patti Page’s one-time wish was emerging as a winged reality.
Page considers Sail GHS to be the foot in the door that keeps the gate from being slammed shut on public access to our harbor. She believes that the harbor is a resource to be enjoyed by all.
Many coastal cities and towns around the country are vigorously embracing Community Boating Centers as prosperous enterprises that invigorate their waterfronts. Patti is an active proponent for just such a center, here in Gloucester.
In light of what she has accomplished with discarded or donated gear, imagine what she could make happen given actual support from the city. Give her a chance, and she just might find a way for the city to enhance the existing harbormaster’s building as a public shore-side facility. Ward Councilors would like to hear your thoughts about programs such as Sail GHS.
 Sail GHS is a competitive high school sailing program which is open to the youth of Cape Ann and beyond. Contact info: sailghs@yahoo.com  Look for Sail GHS  on facebook.

Comments on Loving and Leaving the Fort


  1. Wonderful memories when life was so simply


  2. You were blessed with these memories. Thank you for sharing.


  3. Thank you. Truly. It means a lot to me that folks are actually enjoying my writing when I am full of self doubt. Rewarding to hear your feedback and it makes me look forward to finding a moment to use my ink pen again.


  4. We cannot grow without roots! Love the story!
    Thank you, for sharing the gift!