Captain of the Ship

I am the captain of a sinking ship.

An old and dated vessel that ran aground some time ago.  Bound seaward with the rolling foam, with patchwork sails and scaly sides.   And my men, they sit where I tell them: in rows side by side oars at the ready to fight the tide.  And the waves crash repeatedly.  Those in the back near the rudder, go under.  Those in front stay scarcely above with coughing salty sputtering lungs.  And they all look up at me expectantly, wondering why I seated each one accordingly.  The measure of each man by the filling of his lungs.    

 Some go under in the boiling foam never to resurface.  Some make a panicked swim for a shore.   Some simply  drown into watery obedient nothingness, punished by their captain’s choices.  

I am the captain of a sinking ship.  But I’m the only un-drownable man on board.