The whirl of the winch, the spin of the handle.
The sound of the waves rushing past, rapping the hull like a rhythmic drum verse; a pulse as we ride up the mountainous swell and surf down the other side, deep into its trough.
Whoosh. Arms and hands a smear of gray as they spin around and around pulling in the ease on the sheet.
“It’s me! I’m coming down, I’m coming down.”
A flap of the chute, a snap really, as it settles back into position. Full and bright. A parachute tugging its charge down a watery path.
The early morning sun is starting to wake. She stretches her glittery rays up above her head tickling the high clouds and winking a soulful “good morning!” to the rolling waters of Lake Michigan.
The sailors pause a moment, faces angled to the east, embracing the golden warmth of the rays, drinking in the colors of the birth of a new morning.
A moment later, the chute, indignant that it be ignored in the face of a new day, signals its displeasure with a loud snap as it folds into itself.
Startled, the sailors return their attention to the roiling waters, the wind, the sway of their vessel.