The creaking deck gently sways beneath my feet as I look across theflat
horizon, my weary eyes straining to see what lies upon yon unseen shore.
wind has lost
itís breath and our vessel, aye, the very sea, have no life. Canvas skin
limp from the
broad shoulders of towering trees that be masts, thick needles of wood
the bright, cloudless sky. The sun seems to stand still, yet ever moves
trek across the sparkling blue heavens.
A casual yawn escapes my lips as I lean back, stretching my arms and looking
the quiet ship.
Bored seamen loiter about, tying ropes, mending worn sails, mindless
the monotony with their tasks repeated yet another time this lazy day.
miss their coarse
laughter, vulgar oaths, ribald songs of treasure, wenching and rum. The
call it - no wind, calm seas, birdless skies. The passing of the hours
to stir any
interest, as time, a fickle mistress at best, mocks the dulled spirits
in her selfish
As far as one can see in any direction is only empty, blue sea -empty and
quiet. Not a single
the eager eye. No landmark, wayfaring bird, or foraging denizen of the
glassy surface. Even the sight of another vessel lost in the quiet, watery
our low spirits and relieve the shroud of dejection hanging over the
ship. I have
experienced this natural phenomenon before, yet it befuddles my mind still.
am eager to
put into port and feel solid ground beneath my feet once more.
Though not a sailor, I have often wandered the oceans in quest of securing
in some new
and faraway land. But success often eludes my grasp and I must search for
opportunities. However, with each new harvest consumed by drought
forced to move
on once again. My feet tire of seeking new roads and my heart yearns for
a home to call
my own, land on which to raise my sons. Home for me has been an
condition and I know not where I may lay my head on the morrow.
Again I turn to face the sea, rubbing my rough, unshaven face, my thick
upon the smooth
hewn wooden railing. Always it is the same, the water, and yet often
is a manís life, never seeming to waver, but different than the years
him. We hunger to resist change, yet it is part of our nature. Growth demands
it we would die. One cannot always be a towering oak flaunting strength
Still we must bow our spirits to the breath of Fate.
Though my sour fortune can be a painful burden upon my shoulders, in my
soul a bright
flame of hope
ever flickers, urging me onward, driving me to anxiously greet each new
expectation and awe. With every dawn my strength is renewed, my spirit
in the glorious
majesty of heavenís holy light. I be a dreamer, a wonderer, a questing
I be not a religious
man, yet to experience the wonder of creation is to drink deeply from
grail of divine splendor.
In times like these I remember the past and in its memory contemplate what
is yet to come.
I be the stray
wolf, the whelp that suckled longest at its motherís breast. I be the one
be weaned, the
one to linger, the one, the last to find his path. I be fortuneís bastard
child, the forgotten
brother of the twins, Romulus and Remus. In their shadow I stand, unseen,
unnoticed beside the chronicles of their accomplishments. Fathers of kings
they be, founders of empires. And I be a blind beggar wandering aimlessly
through the back alleys of their worlds.
I remember our sire. He was a man of strength, of solid character, not
a rich man but an able
one, a man who
provided for his own. He sacrificed himself in defense of his family, weapon
in the deed of his life. To me, his firstborn, he bequest his name, yet
more than I
be born of his mold. They walk in his footsteps while I be an autumn leaf
about by the
wind. Upon the foundation of his life the hands of my brethren erect pillars
my wandering feet leave behind rocky trails of forsaken dreams. If his
could gaze upon
me now, what words would he have for my foolish life?
My melancholy is stirred by a heavy sigh and my mind turns to consider
my presence upon
In my tiny cabin lay my blade, my instrument for giving me life, this razor-sharp
messenger of death. Daily do I spend time fingering its long, keen
blade, caressing its
handle. Most prefer a grip light and balanced but such is not for me. Nay,
my hand a crushing
wand that may bludgeon a manís head as well as possessing teeth to
a bodyís mortal flesh. Often has it been the means of delivering many a
onto the last
voyage across the cold, dark face of bloody Styx.
Though rough and hard, my sensitive fingers daily apply a thin layer of
clear, yellowish oil
to my deadly
sword with the tenderness of a mother caring for the waif of her lost belovedís
does its smooth skin drink the bitter nectar that cleanses it from lifeís
the conclusion of this devoted service I take a light cloth in hand and
wipe the remnants
of the excess potion from the glistening metal. From thence, on the empty
afterdeck, my skilled arm ever practices its warrior art, relishing some
activity to calm the fires
that boil in my soulís passionate cauldron.
Shaking my head, I clear my mind, turning my sight outward from the turmoil
within me to
the lonely blue lying before my eyes, seeing once again the never ending
beyond the distant horizon. I look down into the smooth surface below
me and wonder
what others have wandered upon this unmarked trail to distant, exotic
ports and beckoning
homes. And how many souls have left their cold, white flesh lying in
the murky depths?
In silent reverence my spirit salutes those who may lie below, bidding
them an unspoken
prayer for good fortune in the arms of eternity. Death humbles even