|The sea is an demanding mistress, she will not be taken
for granted. Those who travel on her wavy skirts must obey or reside forever in the
depths of her soul. She does not show favoritism as the smallest craft to the
largest ship must comply with her will.
She can afford safe passage from one land to another, calmly ignoring the presence of the vessels that sail across her. Then on the whim of the wind she can show her fury and the journey can be a ride through a watery hell.
This lady has the strength to make even the largest vessels whine and plead for her mercy. Struggling to ride her fierce waves many a ship has submitted to her will and buried their bow into her belly taking down all aboard.
Then as if a warning to others she spits the occasional ship onto the shores. The ghostly remains of a boat that once sailed her waters and fell into her ill favor. Whipped and beaten its remains are taken by its mistress to lay ravaged against some rocky coral.
She has taken the treasures of kings and queens and still held ransom the ships and crews of those who offered it up to her. Then at other times she hears the whispered pleas of the poorest sailor and permits his return to shore. Sometimes tossing his thirsty body in her brine for days teasing him with her offer of refreshment.
This mistress can also lie perfectly still for days holding captive a clipper ship when the winds refuse to fill its sails. Then she becomes a desert that offers no oasis, no shelter from the sun and the ship seems bound to her surface as if sinking in her wet sands with each attempt to move onward.
She can strike her waves like a mighty whip that crashes down on the decks of ships. Some seemingly coming out of the heavens their height so immense. The size of her being always reminds the sailor that he is but a ripple on her body and if he fails to heed her commands she will consume him.
Why then do men sail upon her waves? Is it that she is beautiful and draws men to her rocking them with her breathing motion? Can it be her calming affect as she carries them from one shore to another lifting, stroking and lapping the sides of their ships? Is it the challenge to be ridden that she tosses out that men must accept and try to meet?
The sea is a mystery mistress and will never be fully understood by man. She remains always in control and those that ride her waves must always respect her. Knowing that her soul is too deep for man to conquer and at best he lies a supplicated servant to her wishes.
Cheryl C. Helynck