X is for xebec

It is hard to believe that one blogging challenge is about to end, and another one is about to start. But the fact that I am on the letter X tells me so. Every year, when I do the Blogging from A to Z challenge, I always scramble to find a word that starts with X. It’s not as if I am saying X-words every day. In the past, I’ve found that my X words have given me a lot of fun. Probably because they are wild and unusual.  This year is no exception (X-ception?). I chose the word xebec, which is, for sure, not a word that I would say every day. Until about fifteen minutes ago, I didn’t know what xebec meant.

A xebec is a small three-masted pirate ship. So I am going to write about a small three-masted pirate ship. No, I’ve never been a pirrrrrrrate and I’ve never traveled in a pirate ship.

During the isolation and lockdown time, however, I had a lot of time in which my imagination was my only companion. You can go to any place in your imagination. You can travel the seven seas without getting seasick. You can fly to distant planets at the speed of light, which is not physically possible. You can live in great underground cities. And you can be a pirate. 

So here goes. Writing about the xebec, that is. I’m going to write two poems, using the two different poetic forms that I had chosen this month.

This first is the nonce poem. That is a very flexible form. The poet creates a format for one-time use. So I am going to create a new format.

Let’s see… two syllables, four syllables, six syllables, eight syllables, ten syllables, twelve syllables… and back down by twos until I’m back to two syllables.


sails away

to find fame and glory

and storehouses of great treasure

amidst the beautiful smell of sea air

away from civilization’s putrid carcass

where men in neckties coldly count money

and hide it in towering vaults

because they are afraid

of grimy thieves

at night

The second is the waka poem. I will use the six-line format, with the following syllable scheme: 5-7-7-5-7-7

The xebec departs

to sail across the rough seas.

Its captain plots the great theft.

“Arrrrgggh, me matey, arrggh.

We will snatch the great treasure

And grab the grandest of foods

and all will fear us.”

Today’s question: If you could sail in a xebec, where would you like to go?

3 thoughts on “X is for xebec”

  1. What a great X word, I find that one of the most challenging letters also. I enjoyed your poems and I'm not sure where I'd go if I was on that ship.

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