I miss the changing view outside my window;
how each new day discovered a new place,
and the slow blossoming of days that felt like two.
As I travelled I had bed and galley with me,
saw friends each place I went, other boaters
who waved, and easy chats by the lock side.
Gone is the need to fetch water, mend ropes.
No more cold toes on winter mornings, but
I loved that hidden world; my boat was my Home.
Four walls and heating desiccate my spirit –
I miss the fire that catches when ice is outside
and the blazing welcome of my little stove.
No more intimate dinners in my snug saloon,
cosy nights in winter, towpath drinks in summer,
the security of roaming and always being home,
There’s no mist rising off the dark water
outside my kitchen windows in early morning,
no deck for sitting out in dappled moonlight.
No cows, no coots, no movement;
I miss being rocked to sleep.
Oh how I miss being rocked to sleep.
— Christine Rigden