I am from fir trees against the Milky Way. I am from frigid water and cobblestone beaches, mountains leading down to the sea. I am from a family of earth worshippers and a family of artists. I am from a family of friends who take care of each other. I am from snow and ice, and crisp, cool air. I am from lobster land, but I don’t eat it. I am from a tourist attraction, and take care of people from away who come to marvel at our island views. I am from sailors and artists and hikers, naturalists and swimmers and writers. I am from a loving partner and a wise old cat who just left this world. I am from my pink granite coast that is home.
I am going to coconut, mango, and pamplemousse paradise. I am going to a musical language in a hot, humid land. I am going where mountains meet the sea. I am going to an ocean of flashy fish and enormous eels. I am going to atolls, flat as pancakes and vulnerable to sea level rise. I am going to ancient coral reefs and beaches strewn with their skeletons. I am going to a land of ancient gods and Christianity, side by side and not contradictory. I am going to a place where people don’t need to make a living, they just live.*
I am here on this swaying ship under a million billion stars. I am here in a wide open ocean, no land or traffic for hundreds of miles. I am here with the flying fish, boobies, and waves. I am here on a ship devoted to elbow grease cleaning, science (ooh, ahh), and haikus. I am here with hard working folks who laugh easily and craft early and often. I am here eating homemade bread and mango dusted with pickled plum powder. I am here, sleeping hard.
(Not sleeping is also hard.) I am here to learn. I am here, breathing and being and taking it all in. I am here.
Rose Edwards, B Watch then A Watch, Deckhand
*Thanks, Josiane, for this line!