Later, some knew it as a place that bred malefic spirits. Spring starvation showed skully heads, knobbed joints beneath flesh. What desperate work to stay alive, to scrob and claw through hard times. The alchemist sea changed fishermen into wet bones, sent boats to drift among the cod, cast them on the landwash.
The Shipping News by Annie Proulx
What is the meaning of 'wet bones' here? It sounds like 'coward'. Am I right?