Earth grazer

A friend of mine was once part of the crew of one the two Greenpeace ocean going ships.
He and some friends were enjoying a quiet smoke on deck under the 360° calm stars.
They saw an Earth grazer – a large flame-trailing heavenly object falling across the black sky.
They all watched in silence as it neared the horizon.
Then they saw it!
Small and far, far away. Distinct, but utterly without sound. Illuminated by beyond-the-horizon Moonlight.
It was the huge feathery plume of water thrown up high by the force of the impact as the meteor ended its lonely journey of thousands of millions of years in the southern Atlantic.
~
This will have been in the late 1980s, around the time of the sinking of the Rainbow Warrior by the French special forces while it was at anchor in Auckland, New Zealand

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