Crusoe Boys by Vincent Serventy

By Vincent Serventy

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Tom is a chip off the old block. Reminds me of my Dad. Solid as oak. The boys’ll be better off here than in Albany. No way of getting into trouble. ‘Right boys. It’s off to the ship. ’ Somers never gave much outward show of affection. To hug him would be like hugging a jarrah tree, thought Matt. Just as rough and just as hard. The boys were quiet as they watched the Silver Gull move from the bay at a spanking pace. The east wind filled the sails as she disappeared around the headland to the west.

Then as suddenly as it had started it was all over. The dolphins leaped high into the air, fell with a splash, then moved out to sea, their bodies rising and falling in a smooth rhythm. Tom and Matt walked back to the hut in a fever of excitement. What a day! What a life! Who would ever believe the story of the dolphins? 58 chapter seven SEALERS ummer slowly slid into autumn. The boys added blankets to their beds and logs to the fireplace. Both were growing stronger and taller with swimming, walking, climbing, shovelling salt, digging the garden and the hundred-andone other activities on their Home Island.

Wake up, Matt. Don’t moon. ’ ‘I don’t know,’ Matt said slowly, with a puzzled frown on his face. ‘Perhaps ... ’ Tom’s scorn was plain. ‘You’re mad. Fish don’t dance. Well, we’d better get back home. ’ Matthew turned away, his look of wonderment slowly fading. ‘But when is Dad coming back? ’ Tom was confident. They both stared out at the western channel between Goose and Home Islands. Their father’s small ship must soon sail in, laden with goods from the port of Albany, and the stores they would need.

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