- Written by David Reece, Springhouse Faculty and Boatbuilder -
I wrote the following silliness as a kind of invocation ceremony for the launching of our school boat. I can't resist an opportunity to be goofy in public. Most of the language in this is inspired by the opening scene of the Odyssey, with a little bit of the alliteration of Anglo Saxon epic poetry thrown in for fun. Enjoy.
Sing, O Muse, of the hapless, drifting mariner who, wayless, washed upon the kind-hearted shores of the fair island of Springhouse. Sing of the high priestess of that island, servant of clear-eyed Athena, who did take him in, foster him, and raise him up to carry out the will of the immortal gods: that the young heroes of that island should be made into men and women of the sea.
Sing also of the trials and hundredfold labors of our epoxy-crusted heroes as they did mount their vomit-scented chariot and ascend, time and time again, the winding slopes of sacred Mount Finn, to, under the humble hand of the wayward mariner, sand and saw, hammer and hew, paint and plane, fashioning a hollow ship to ply upon the wine-dark sea.
Sing of the worthy benefactors, whose hearts were moved to come to the aid of our young heroes with the most liberal of offerings. May their hearts spill over with joy. May the sight of our young heroes in the hollow ships of their own creating, lift up their spirits, satisfy their minds, and fill their hearts with toga-bursting pride.
[We break here to drink a toast of sacramental (read non-alcoholic) champagne or some such, anoint the boat, and pour a votive libation into the water for King Neptune]
And now we of Springhouse do beseech thee, O gods, to bless our young heroes and their slender-hulled ship. Above all, King Neptune, thou mysterious earth-shaker and lord of the deep, we ask your protection, having made good and proper offerings, that our fair-cheeked heroes may go safely upon the sea and return to their island in good time. Also, we do invoke the four winds, Boreas of the North, Notus of the South, Eurus of the East, and Zephyrus of the West. May you blow steady and firm, but also kindly upon our hollow chariot of the seas.
And now, having made proper invocation to the gods, let’s get moving! Three cheers for WANDERER!