We get asked a lot where the inspiration for the boat’s name came from because most everyone has heard the quote; Stay Gold Ponyboy. The short answer is; the boat is gold.
The longer answer is: I’m (somewhat halfheartedly) working towards a degree in literature and enjoy reading Robert Frost.
Ashley says she liked a local Seattle band by the name of Stay Gold on Indecision Records; I’d wager they named their band after The Outsiders or maybe the same poem I tipped my hat towards; Robert Frost’s “Nothing Gold Can Stay”. We both are rabid Step Brothers fans.
Even with that, it’d be far more interesting to explore what the name means to those who come across this special yellow-ish gold boat named Stay Gold.
It’s quite often that we get a very profound, positive reaction from people when we are out sailing. Some will yell out “Stay Gold!” and pump their fist in the air while others go with the standard “Stay Gold Ponyboy!” – regardless; the reactions are usually overt.
I believe the reason for this is because the phrase Stay Gold is a positive call to action that resonates deeply inside us all.
To be fair; we just thought the name sounded cool, gave an ironic nod to the gold boat that would cost thousands of dollars to re-paint and, at the same time, referenced some things in life we appreciated. It wasn’t until later that we noticed it caused such a tremendous reaction with people.
In the book “The Outsiders”, by S. E. Hinton (she was 18 when it was published), one of the characters recites the famous line “stay gold, Ponyboy, stay gold” in reference to the poem by Robert Frost; “Nothing Gold Can Stay”.
Hinton and Frost are, by popular literature standards, referencing the loss of youth, innocence and the fleeting moments of life. Ponyboy is being told by Johnny to appreciate the sunsets, enjoy the good times, learn from the bad, and see the world through a child-like innocence – all things we adults need to be reminded of quite often.
I think these ideals are ingrained inside those of us who have traveled down the path of life a bit farther than others. Seeing or hearing the name Stay Gold creates a stir inside our souls to never forget the important things in life.
Or, maybe it’s just a cool name. Regardless; stay gold Ponyboy, Stay Gold.
Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.
Nothing Gold Can Stay – Robert Frost (1874-1963)