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Rotten Perfect Poems of the Sea

Rotten Perfect Pie Hole Author
The author, on watch with pie.

Poets laureate of Toronto have described Eva H.D. as “the real deal” and “a punk“. She has sailed aboard the Europa, Mist of Avalon and STV Pathfinder TS Playfair. Here are two poems not included in her recent, excellent, Rotten Perfect Mouth published by Mansfield Press.


Bitter Reverie

Filling up books with saltbound notions,
the continent due south, while pointless thoughts
shimmy on, past grasping; deckhands tie knots,
yeast and beef waft from the galley, ocean
water froths the prow, bunkmates put lotion
on their hands, and the ship judders on, stots
like a deer at the engine’s revving shocks.
All around, the solid world’s in motion:
a cup of tea, the deck, a pair of whales
to port. All of it moves. I’m lost, of course
in vindictive reveries, luffing sails,
the seesaw of my imaginings. Force
plays upon the rig, snaps air from my throat,
drives us dawnward. My thoughts fly with the boat.

Friday Sky

The Southern Cross was blazing like a shield.
We drew imaginary lines straight down
to the horizon, heading south. A field
of fire, that sky. A kingdom and a crown.
We fell asleep at sunrise, and awoke
to stand watch in the briefest autumn squall.
We peeled off rainsoaked coats. A rainbow broke
the mat of cloud to puzzle pieces. All
of us went Ah. Greater shearwaters flew
white-masked in our wake. It touched the water
at both ends, that rainbow. Banks of clouds blew
West, screened sunset leaking shades of slaughter.
The night sky belched out sheets of fluorescent
light, and the new moon, a milky crescent.


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The Canadian Nautical Research Society


At the Nautical Mind, we are pleased to be able to work with Canadian authors and publishers, and to promote books that explore and celebrate Canada’s maritime past and current existence. The Canadian Nautical Research Society is an organization that has the same goal. If you’re a fan of Canadian maritime history, then you’re sure to recognize the names of members like Barry Gough, Marc Milner, Richard Gimblett and Roger Sarty. If you’re an alumnus or former crew of STV St Lawrence II, STV Pathfinder or TS Playfair, then Maurice Smith is a living legend. There are many more members who are actively involved in maritime and nautical research at the global, national and local levels. We at the Nautical Mind would like to recognize the contribution of the Canadian Nautical Research Society, and its past and present members.

cnrs-scrn_logo_color_150x163 Originally established as the Canadian Society for the Promotion of Nautical Research, the Canadian Nautical Research Society was incorporated 25 October 1984 and achieved the status of a registered charity shortly thereafter. “Ties That Bind: the Roots of NASOH and the CNRS” gives some historical background to our early days as seen through the eyes of W.A.B Douglas, one of our founders and a past president of our Society.

The objectives of the Society are:

  • to promote nautical research in Canada
  • to disseminate the results of such research
  • and to encourage an awareness of Canada’s maritime heritage

To those ends, the Society publishes a quarterly journal The Northern Mariner/Le marin du nord, quarterly newsletter Argonauta, and holds an annual conference. and makes several awards:

  • the Jacques Cartier MA Prize in Maritime Affairs, to encourage graduate students at the Master’s level
  • the Gerry Panting Award, which is a bursary to a young scholar to attend the annual conference to present a paper, and
  • annually awards The Keith Matthews Awards — named in honour of the Society’s first President — to recognize outstanding publications in the field of nautical research.

The Nautical Mind’s shelves have hosted a large number of books authored, edited and compiled by CNRS members, including all of those named above. To recognize their contributions, such books are identified on our website. The current line-up of CNRS members’ books available at the store at this link to our website.

If you’re interested in more information, it can be found at the CNRS Website, Facebook, and Twitter

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Ultimate Sailing Photographer Sharon Green at RCYC on Nov 30

RCYC Presents: Ultimate Sailing Photographer Sharon Green at RCYC

Saturday November 29th, 7:30pm, Badminton Courts

Tickets $20

Come Experience the excitement of yacht racing over the past three decades through the eyes of world-famous photographer Sharon Green.




Ultimate Sailing Photographer Sharon Green at RCYC

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Ultimate Sailing photographer Sharon Green at PCYC on Nov 26

On Wednesday, 26 November, world-renowned yachting photographer Sharon Green will be at Port Credit Yacht Club to speak about her 30 year career and share stories from behind the lens. She will also be signing copies of her lavish new coffee table book Sharon Green’s 30 Years of Ultimate Sailing and the 2015 calendar.

Dinner starts @ 1800 hrs
Presentation @ 2000 hrs

RSVP Required, contact at (905) 278-5578 or (905) 278-7911

Sharon Green at PCYC on Wednesday



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David Beaupré’s Advice to Liveaboards

David Beaupré, author of Quest and Crew writes:

There are as many reasons to buy a sailboat and cruise off to the Caribbean as there are dreams. Quest and Crew is the memoir of one such dream. It is a dream complete with blue water sailing and palm fringed islands. For Wendy and me it was the adventure of a lifetime. Each day in paradise presented us with new challenges which helped to refine our sailing abilities.

David and Wendy
David & Wendy

Our cruising style varied considerably from most liveaboard cruisers. We sought out the most remote beautiful anchorages, free from the trappings of civilization. We routinely stayed for weeks in hidden coves that only saw two or three boats a year. The key to our enjoyment and independence was having the right boat and the perfect equipment.

Quest and Crew is the story of our adventures. I also hope that it is a testament to a fine classic boat that was lovingly restored. Quest is a Bayfield 36 that was built in Ontario from a Hayden Gozzard design.  Her beautiful lines and unquestioned pedigree do not tell the complete story. She possesses one elusive and intangible quality that we all seek. She is a very lucky boat. Her luck was proven in Chapter One when Quest faces down a 150 mph hurricane and survives without a scratch while the marina is destroyed and the fleet of moored boats were holed and sunk.

If I could convey one important thought to the reader, it would be the idea that anybody with the will to succeed and a modest cruising kitty can follow their dream. It doesn’t require great strength or a lifetime of blue water sailing. The ability to captain a boat safely does require complete knowledge of the craft and a great deal of common sense. The most important requirement to make an ocean cruiser successful is the desire to take on the unknown. Out on the ocean, outside of the sight of land you discover the meaning of self reliance.

Quest in Nevis
Quest in Nevis

Apart from a good boat and cruising kitty the would-be cruiser should possess the ability to adapt to an ever changing environment and have a high degree of faith in their ability to make themselves into competent sailors. They will certainly need to adapt to very tight living conditions. Without a doubt the greatest stress on a cruising sailboat is not the raging sea. Many couples choose to live their sailing dream in later life. For the first time in their lives they will be living day after day, shoulder to shoulder in the tightest of quarters. In the end it is the human relationship that is put under the greatest strain.  Be prepared. Your relationship will change. It will strengthen or weaken. Under adversity you and your mate will grow closer only if you are willing to compromise.

Quest and Crew by David BeaupréIf I were to offer the simplest advice it would be to purchase the right boat for your chosen cruising grounds. Spend some time discovering the boat’s strengths and weaknesses. But most importantly you must get up every day and make a commitment to get just a little closer to your goal of sailing away. Many want-to-be cruisers take a passive attitude to preparing for their adventure. The preferred alternative is to be a hands-on captain and do the work yourself. This will serve you well in finding the confidence to become a successful cruiser. This intangible quality can only come from deep within you. The desire to go sailing is a classic dream that has stood the test of time. To live even a part of your life on the water requires a mind change and the strength to test your abilities.



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A Pair of Canadian Legends

Herb McCormick, author of the very well received [WSJ Review – may be pay-walled] biography of the Pardeys, As Long As It’s Fun, writes:

As Long As It's FunIn early January, almost 33 years to the day after his historic performance in Toronto’s Massey Hall, Neil Young walked back onto the same stage armed with a harmonica, a piano, about a dozen guitars, his dry wit and his incredible talent. Sadly, I missed that original 1971 show, but happily, I caught the 2014 concert. And it was fantastic. Neil absolutely crushed it.

Even better, Neil was actually the second Canadian legend whose company I was honored to keep on that wonderful winter day. For I’d come to Toronto for the annual boat show, and also to catch up with old friends Lin and Larry Pardey. In the arenas of boatbuilding and voyaging, few mariners in history are as accomplished as Larry Pardey.

I’ve known the famous cruising couple and authors for many years now, and they’re the subjects of my new biography on the pair, As Long As It’s Fun. Over the years, of course, Neil had some accompaniment, including a trio of guys named Nash, Stills and Crosby, and a band called Crazy Horse. And Larry had Lin. In their own ways, they all made some beautiful music.

So I’ll remember my trip for a lot of reasons, but especially for the time I spent in the presence of two accomplished “homeboys” who started in Canada, then conquered the world.

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Offshore Cruising Companion authors’ Seminars at the Toronto Boat Show

The Boat Show is fast approaching. John Neal & Amanda Swan Neal will be among many authors, sailors, and sailor-authors delivering highly informative seminars there. They write:

Hello Toronto!
  We’ve just completed a little 9,000 mile jaunt from New Zealand, up to Tahiti, as far west as New Caledonia and back to New Zealand. Here are our expedition log entries. This was our 23rd season of taking sailors keen to learn more about ocean passage making to sea on sometimes very demanding passages and watching them gain more skills and confidence by the day. A highlight on our last ocean passage from New Caledonia to New Zealand was having our crew choose to press on to face a powerful frontal passage with 50 kts and seas to 7 meters instead of sheltering at Norfolk Island.

Today we’re holed up at our little island home 12 miles east of Victoria, BC putting the finishing touches on to the exciting PowerPoint seminars we will be presenting at the Toronto Boat Show:

Continue reading Offshore Cruising Companion authors’ Seminars at the Toronto Boat Show

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Boat Show Jan 11-19! Authors! Seminars!

BOATTTTTTComing at the tail end of one of the most unrelentingly merry festive seasons in memory, the 2014 Toronto Boat Show promises to be a similarly unrelenting Saturnalia of boats, authors, wrist-bands, bargains, and that guy perched over an artificial pool yelling about fishing stuff.  This year we’ll have more authors than ever before, including some of the most famous and beloved sailor authors of all time! Be sure to visit us at booth G545 in the “Mariner’s Market Place”.


Lin & Larry Pardey

care-and-feedingInternationally famous hard-core sailors, circumnavigators, authors, and generally neat people discuss “The Adventures that Shaped our Lives.” Their books include The Care and Feeding of Sailing Crew, Cruising in Serrafyn, The Cost Conscious Cruiser, and many more.
Sat 11, 12:30pm at Salon 107
Sun 12, 12:30pm at Salon 107
Mon 13, 2:30pm at Salon 107
Mon 13, 4:30pm at Salon 107
Tues 14, 2:30pm at Salon 107
Tues 14, 4:30pm at Salon 107
Wed 15, 2:30pm at Salon 107
Wed 15, 5pm at Salon 107


John Neal & Amanda Swan Neal

International cruisers, sailors, and authors discuss how to prepare for your voyage, storm tactics, diesels, and selecting a boat.
Sat 11, 11am at Presentation Theatre
Sat 11, 2pm at Presentation Theatre
Mon 13, 1pm at Presentation Theatre
Mon 13, 3:30pm at Salon 107


Herb McCormick

The former editor-in-chief of Cruising World magazine and yachting correspondent for the New York Times, Herb McCormick is an accomplished offshore sailor who has raced and cruised from above the Arctic Circle to Antarctica, and countless places in between.
Sat 11, 3:30pm at Salon 107
Sun 12, 3pm at Salon 107


Paul & Sheryl Shard

Distant-ShoresNautical Mind favourites Paul & Sheryl are the award winning hosts of Distant Shores inform on Sailing in Europe and the Med.
Sat 11, 6pm at Presentation Theatre
Sun 12, 2pm at Presentation Theatre

Many More!

There will be many other authors, both at our booth and delivering seminars.  Liza Copeland, Tania Abei, Derek Hatfield, and plenty more!   For a full list, see the official Toronto Boat Show Seminar Schedule on their site (


*Times and locations are subject to change on a whim without any notice whatsoever as the boat show is a fickle and capricious beast.

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Sailing Dreams Can Come True

Connie McBride, author of Simply Sailing and Eurisko Sails West: A Year in Panama writes about sailing dreams coming true:

Connie McBride

Dreams are funny things. You create them, you covet them, you venture to share them. My mother-in-law’s response to our dream of selling the house, quitting our jobs and sailing away with our three small sons was, “It’s good to have dreams, Dear.” Yes it is. It’s even better to make them come true.

When I asked our oldest son what he thought of his childhood spent sailing around the Caribbean, his words let me know that we had made the right choice in following our dreams all those years ago. “People are always telling kids that they can do anything they want, but they don’t really mean it. They mean that you can do anything that fits in their little box. But you guys taught me that there is no ‘supposed to’ and that you really can do anything. So now, when I think about what I want to do with my life, nothing is out of my reach. I really can do anything.”

The best thing about dreams is that we control them. If you can dream it, it can happen.

Sail on.

Eurisko Sails West: A Year in Panama
Eurisko Sails West: A Year in Panama









Simply Sailing
Simply Sailing


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“Remember, it’s about sailing!” — Lin Pardey

Lin & Larry Pardey will be at the Toronto Boat Show this January (11th – 14th)!  Lin writes:

DSC_0019Remember, it’s about sailing!

Spring refit time finally arrived here in the southern hemisphere. With the wind down, rain holding off for a week, we set to work on the paint, the varnish. I got my scrubbing gloves on and began removing spots of mildew that marred the white of the overhead. Every day I laid out a plan for the next item I’d attack. Larry was right there with me until the sixth day. It dawned bright, clear, warm. A light breeze ruffled the water – perfect for applying a coat of varnish to the skylight. “Forget working, let’s go sailing,” Larry said, throwing a wrench into what he jokingly calls “my tidy little plans.”

“But it’s going to rain tomorrow and I’ve already sanded the forehatch,” I countered.

“If it’s going to rain tomorrow, we’d better get out sailing today,” he announced.

CAREFEEDSoon we were skimming away from the jetty. I sheeted in the jib and watched our wake straighten as our forward momentum gave the rudder traction. For the next few hours I forgot about spring refit and was reminded of the rule we’d made many years before when we were outfitting our very first offshore cruising boat together – no matter how long the list, clean the boat up, and get out sailing every two weeks. We’d learned getting out sailing as we outfitted or prepped for a voyage, we can see if our upgrades really worked, check to see if we’d forgotten to put something on the list, maybe even cross some things off as we found they weren’t really necessary. But even more important, getting out sailing served to remind us why we were doing all of this work. That was years ago, and Larry was right, it was the perfect choice this time too. (And by the way, it didn’t rain for three days so the varnish got done too.)