Kathleen Reguindin

The Sailor - Poem by Kathleen Reguindin

Since childhood, he was fascinated by the Atlantic Ocean
Spending hours daydreaming of circumnavigation
To build his own sailboat was his lofty ambition
His heart set on this expensive and maybe foolish mission.

He made it a point to always be close to the water
Sometimes scaling up a hill where stood the ruins of an old tower
All by himself, he sought refuge and shelter
Pretending to be King, sometimes, a conquering warrior!

Standing on a turret, his gaze was drawn
On nowhere else but to the blue harmonic motion
Waves crashing on boulders and shores
The sounds mesmerizing and soothing to his soul.

Countless times, he went on solitary walks
What went on in his mind, was he taking stock?
Barefooted he felt the sand, contemplating his future
His look quite intent, but always riveted towards the water.

His dark brown eyes scan the vast blue expanse
Imagining wonders in store, perhaps the chance of romance
And when dusk approached, he clambered down the hill
Fully aware it was back to reality, gone was the thrill.

In his teens, he was uprooted from his beloved nation
His family all migrated to a strange country across the ocean.
Canada became his new home, but he found it tough adapting
Lover of the sun and the ocean, this new way of life to him initially was disconcerting.

And life went on, into an adult he had become
Marriage, family, children …was this really part of the plan?
But deep inside, the call of the ocean softly beckoned
Restless and driven, this unexplainable passion took a life of its own.
Strong emotion or call it an obsession
Unhappily, something had to give.
They parted ways but he remained a good father.

The first chance he got, he started building his dream boat
Dedicating countless hours, no help he sought
With his hands and tenacity he worked around the clock
Obsessed by this vision, money he spent, he couldn’t stop.

After months of toil, boat not quite finished,
He was able to set sail around Lake Erie
Feeling of satisfaction not diminished
All that mattered was feeling the winds behind his back,
Sound of the waves lapping the hulls, he savoured
For two seasons, he enjoyed the fruits of his labour.

And yet, after some time, this was not quite sufficient
Once again, his pride and ego took over
A second sailboat he must build for his brother
Working around the clock, in gray matter he was truly deficient!

Finally completed, on the boat, Jakatar, he and his brother
Set sail to cross the Atlantic, accompanied by another
Once again, this sailor was in his element
On this cold and treacherous ocean, but loving every moment!
Long was the journey, Portugal his destination
No finer way to travel, this was his fixation!

That was a decade ago, so many years ago!
The raging fever has taken hold again
To the forefront has risen his compulsion
He envies those who have removed their moorings
Craving to be one of them, as he sees triangular sails across the lake passing.

He dreams to be out in the deep blue seas once more, just cruising
Enjoying nature at its best, in the midst of the ocean.
Where man and boat are nothing but insignificant, puny creations!
Where to anyone else this could mean pure terror
This is the life he longs for, the exemplification of true freedom.
Where time, obligations and life’s problems are burdens no more!

This sailor's path and mine crossed two years ago
Me, lover of terra firma and speed and all outdoor activities
Agreeing to venture into the unknown
With this wonderfully eccentric person whom I love!

My imagination gives me a slight taste of what it could be
To be on the boat, our home, moving slowly across the ocean
Lapu-Lapu is its name, sails powered by the winds,
Ocean breeze moving us gently, pushing us to no real destination.

Man at the mercy of Mother Nature at her best and worst!
The true test of strength and determination
Prowess and skill, but most of all mental toughness and patience!

Since this idea was planted in my mind grew eager anticipation
Also wondering if I am ready for the challenge of being alone out there in the vast ocean
He, on the other hand, getting frustrated and overcome by longing.
We both know that time is passing, each minute ticking
We can't turn the clock back, but can only move forward with our planning.
And all I can say is 'Patience, my beloved sailor,
For soon, all of this will come to fruition.'

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Poem Edited: Friday, July 12, 2013

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