Steamboat triangulates on a point in the ocean. There is no mist, only calm and clear blue skies. What differentiates the plural and the singular for sky/skies? I can make out every window on the side as I gaze from above. Each portal looks like the opening of an ant hill. Flying on the side, spray from the water as porpoises play and cackle underwater, so only bubbles come out. There is something about the ease of movement of a ship, how it floats on a body only Jesus reportedly walked on; Something about it that was take for granted as some grand triumph as human invention. Human intervention. Making and molding the environment to meet the needs of the moment. Clarity. Captain with hat and white beard and know how. Prerequisites are: having survived harrowing storm, knowing the difference between port and starboard, ship operations. Fresh paint and new bracers for the on-deck benches and chairs. Moving hotel, island. The bellow of the horn. Deep and reverberant. Vibrating the very core of every soul. Large and domineering. Barely contained. Chaotic when malfunctional.
There is something majestic and royal about a large, grandiose ship leaving port, casting off thick mooring rope, to trek onwards to a new destination. The horn bellows in salutation, thanks, and auf wiedersehen. Folks wave hands, blankets, teddy bears, tissues, handkerchiefs to no one and everyone. It is an exertion of excitable energy. It is a testament to the inventions of humankind; Combustion engines and steel construction. Elegance and terror and strength. You’re living in it now. The spray of salt water comes up from the ocean deep with a little naval baptism. You are blessed and now one with the water, all your land sins forgiven. You are new. Your soul blessed and renewed, to start a new life on the this months long voyage on this vessel. The halls still smell of fresh, white paint and the newness of a classroom on the first day of school; Like you are the first student to have ever entered it, no one else has been here before you. Hotel rooms too; The illusion that no one has come before you; You are the first, everything has been untouched, just kept pristine by magic and good intentions. As the dock and shoreline get closer and closer, a slow-motion zooming out of the world you once knew, before long, your only line of vision is the place where the sea meets this sky; This one, holy horizontal line. We are stuck in an infinite loop, we are stuck in an infinite loop, we are stuck in an infinite loop, we are stuck in an infinite loop – And suddenly your mind begins to become the water, and suddenly you are staying up later and waking up earlier until you no longer know what time it is, and no that clock can’t be right. And then you’re pacing in your claustrophobic cabin, afraid to eat, afraid to talk to anybody for fear you’ll be eaten. And that’s why, when you finally make your exit down the gangway, you drop to the ground and kiss the dirty earth of New York and say a prayer to God incarnate in the Statue of Liberty herself, that you’re blessed because you made it, and if you had to have gone just one more day, you’re not sure if you would’ve made it.