"To Catch the Wind"
The sailboats tack and turn,
weaving their way across water
silk-shot in blue and white.
The tall ships shake out their sails,
lines running to and fro, ropes
in all shapes and sizes
rigging them together.
They run on stays and braces,
lifts and shrounds, all the names
for the lines that master their motion.
History may have forgotten
the first person who thought
to catch the wind with a rope
and a blanket to power a boat,
how long it took to grow from
a single sail to the great windjammers,
but the bards have never forgotten
that ships, like poems, rely on lines.
* * *
Sailboat rigging is relatively simple.
Tall ships have rigging complex enough to require a sail plan. See images of rigging stays and other rigging.
Yachting ropes come in a wide range of sizes and styles.