Surf Poem: The Maleficent Curl

Updated on February 29, 2020
Mark Tulin profile image

A former family therapist, Mark is an author, poet, and short-story writer with a sense of humor.

The Maverick's

The Maverick’s are some of the most treacherous waves in the world, and they have ended the careers of many talented surfers in the world. The waves can crest as high as 60-feet.

The Maverick is located in northern California in a little village called Princeton-by-the-Sea, north of Half Moon Bay. When there is a strong winter storm on the Pacific Ocean, it increases Maverick wave size drastically, attracting some of the most famous surfing risk-takers in the world.

The Maverick can be deadly. Brilliant surfers such as Mark Foo and Sion Milosky have lost their lives there.

Enjoy my ode to the great and scary Maverick's.

Poem: The Maleficent Curl


I am the biggest devil you ever saw,

said the cresting Maverick with a left-handed curl.

I’m maleficent, a shark-infested storm,

sixty-feet tall as I thunder ashore.


I’m arrogant, treacherous as I roll,

cutting close to the jagged rocks,

a kaleidoscope of swirling winds,

demons crossed at each break and curve.


I laugh when those half-crazed cowboys

attempt to ride my back on a board.

They haven’t a chance to harness my power

as I drag them below the water’s surface, forever.


I’ll ruin a poor man’s dreams and hopes,

even the most courageous won’t survive

from a dreadful fate; their lifeless souls

fished out by the Maverick water patrol.


I grunt and swallow, hiss and spray

with the strength of a monster whale.

I’m a tidal wave,

long and high and land-sliding,

as evil as the breath of a dragon’s snarl.

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    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      4 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      Thank you, Genna. Love the ocean but respect it.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      4 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Wow...the imagery is superb, Mark. I love the ocean, but understand it as well.

      One of my favorite lines....

      "I’m arrogant, treacherous as I roll,

      cutting close to the jagged rocks..."

    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      4 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      You certainly have a lot more courage than us mere mortals, Kyler. I would look silly out there with my 11 foot paddle board trying to navigate that monster. Enjoyed your comment. Hope you still find the time to surf.

    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      4 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      Thank you, Umesh.

    • Kyler J Falk profile image

      Kyler J Falk 

      4 months ago from Corona, CA

      What a wonderful little poem here, and as someone who used to charge the beasts at Maverick's I can really appreciate this on a deeper level. It was always daunting going out there, the barrels almost always close out immediately and you take a huge risk trying to get that quick in-and-out.

      This really brought back memories for me.

    • bhattuc profile image

      Umesh Chandra Bhatt 

      5 months ago from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India

      Nice write up. Well presented. Thanks.

    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      5 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      Most waves in California are tame enough to have fun. It’s really a beautiful sport and a wonderful way to stay in shape, to develop balance and agility.

    • Brenda Arledge profile image

      BRENDA ARLEDGE 

      5 months ago from Washington Court House

      Mark,

      This is an excellent write.

      I personally have not tried, nor have I ever witnessed this in person.

      I always thought it might be fun, but now I think I will just steer clear. Sounds like the tidal wave is going to win.

      Thanks for the share.

    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      5 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      Sounds like a good parallel, Diane. Appreciate nature enough to recognize its awesome power.

    • Diane Denison profile image

      Diane Denison 

      5 months ago from Cincinnati Ohio

      I love the Ocean and it's power -great description of the ocean's fury. It's like a Maverick wild horse. I have been in 2 hurricanes and it feels like angry demons are slamming the shore line with large waves flooding every building and street on the coast. You can't play in it, you must run from it. Evacuate

    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      5 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      I admire the surfers too, Ruby.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      5 months ago from Southern Illinois

      Your poem is daring, I have always been afraid to surf, but I admire those who ride the waves. I love your word usage.

    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      5 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      Thank you, Bushra. There’s nothing more powerful than water

    • Bushra Iqbal profile image

      Anya Ali 

      5 months ago from Rabwah, Pakistan

      Nice! Captures the raw power of the wave.

    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      5 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      Yes, or they thrive on dangerous challenges. Some people don’t have fear, while I’m certainly not one of them. Thanks, Flourish.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      5 months ago from USA

      What deadly waves. I’m glad you explained in advance what they are. Surfafers who attempt them must have a secret death wish.

    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      5 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      Thank you, John. Surfers have a different mindset than most of us. Some seem to welcome a dangerous challenge.

    • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Tulin 

      5 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

      Thanks Lorna. Me either. I prefer to paddle board in calm waters.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      5 months ago from Queensland Australia

      I don’t know if surfers who try t ride these waves are brave or crazy, but I do know this is a wonderful poem that expresses the power and terror posed by ‘The Maverick.” Great work. I loved the reading.

    • Lorna Lamon profile image

      Lorna Lamon 

      5 months ago

      You have created a sense of excitement and dread in this wonderful Ode Mark. I learned to surf in Australia, however, I would not be crazy enough to attempt this thrilling ride. An aptly named poem - beautiful photo.

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