The Boat

by alittlehoneyformyheart

So it’s currently 8am and i still have yet to fall asleep. Throughout the entire night, i kept tossing and turning. Not only do i have a major headache, i also have this mad urge to do something artsy. I go through this phase every couple of months where i just need to either draw or paint something, make something or even just write. Seeing as i’m still in Jakarta in my rented place, there’s no chance of me getting my hands on any art supplies especially at this hour and so i’ve resorted to writing a short story. It’s loosely based on some people i know as well as myself which isn’t a bad thing, all in all, i think it makes it even more relatable. It’s not perfect but given my current disposition, i think it isn’t tooo shabby anyway. Enjoy!

There was a huge “thunk” as she jumped into the boat and an even larger pause as she hurriedly grasped the edges and willed it to gain its centre of gravity. Without missing a heartbeat, she reached out for both the paddles and began her journey to the core with nothing but liquid salt from her eyes to mark where she had begun. But just as was the nature of its manufacturer, there might as well have been nothing at all as her sadness blended into its sister the sea.

Back and forth, back and forth, she beat against the waves so furiously in the hopes that for once, she would gain the upperhand. Desperately, she wove the oars in and out, rhythmically stabbing the ocean, displaying a sort of violence that she had never been known for. Hurry up, hurry up, faster, faster, her heart cried vehemently, and even then she lost the battle because at that very moment the sky cracked open and showered the little boat with powerful tears of its own.

Losing was the name of the game and indeed the only game that she had ever won. It wasn’t even a case of a runaway imagination but rather the reality of the world she was born to bear.

Fought back she had done but alas zero to none, exhausted and beaten… at last she had rowed here to drown.

Struggle to her dying breath she would, It was her last battle before the battle would be (inevitably and unavoidably) won. This time she would accept defeat elegantly and sophisticatedly, in a way that she had always been denied. This time when the current tugged her below, there would be no doubt in anyone’s mind that she had commandeered it, that in those moments, she had been victorious—the sole captain of her own fate. Elevated in mind but submerged in body, there she would find the peace that she had been searching for all along. The reconfirmation that she was, ironically, somebody and the reaffirmation that she had been a real person all along.

And yet a sob escaped her lungs as she gasped for breath, shocked to find that her arms had carried on rowing, even when her soul was already on its way to the bottom of the abyss. Satisfied that she had come further in the ocean than she could have hoped for in life, she finally let go of everything that tied her back to land and all of its occupants. She had no use for any of them: not the doubts that exhaustedly sought for affirmation, not the smiles that had weighed the entire world, not the confidence that threatened to eat her up whole in its neverending hunger, not even the oars that would carry her back to shore.

But with her bitterness gone and her emotions the mass of a feather, she found herself bobbing to the beat of the boat. No man is an island and yet why shouldn’t he be, far away from the chaos dragging him down trying to stay up afloat. Juxtaposition was never an issue but only if one knew that neither was permanence.

And so swaying in time to the sails of the sea, she saw all along what it was that she had needed to see.