The Voyage Of Life

Some rower sets off from his childhood to cross the Atlantic of life as the crowds gather to applaud his courage and the adventures he is yet to discover. He is moved by the numbers of people who are  there and pulls strongly on his oars and, as he approaches the harbour entrance, they are lined with well wishers: an astonishing and uplifting sight. 

As he rows the harbour slips slowly behind him, but although close friends and family follow him in little power boats the crowd is left behind.   Slowly as the shore line  recedes , the friends  turn back towards their harbour as his emotions well up: he so wishes he could go with them, but what a fool he’d look if he did, so on he rows, watching their  figures move slowly out of sight. The training and the will power kick in as he pulls on his oars with nothing but the sound of passing water and the waves to keep him company. One thing he knows for sure: there is no turning back.

In life sometimes, or perhaps more often, we move because we have to. That harbour we called a haven is no longer there and we are forced to carry on, destination unknown, to some uncharted location. We have no crowds to cheer us, though friends comment on our situation and commiserate with us for our bad luck. Always the blame seems to lie elsewhere but in the silence of our minds we are uncertain. Is the blame  not partly ours ?  The doubts within us eat at the will to battle on.

Now we find ourselves in mid-ocean, rowing away as hard as we can, or possibly flagging,  then giving up for a time and letting the currents take us where they will: they cannot hear the cheers now. Those who know them are  somewhere else, busy with another life. Will their next choice be as bad as their last? Did he aim too high or too low? Why me? The questions come and go but the problems still remain.

Sometimes you row because you must: you’ve nothing else  to do. Sometimes the beauty of your surroundings can be lost in the effort of surviving them. . But look around you: there is no shelter here so go on you must. Whatever frenzy fired you at the start is gone leaving us to face  the repetition of  days.  

To be without doubt is a symptom of madness but to live without faith is impossible. However much your arms ache believing in yourself is the first step to finding your destination: this is what I tell myself. Doubts are normal but faith is essential and helping each other have more of it is one of our greatest gifts.


About Peter Wells aka Countingducks

Trying to remember what my future is
This entry was posted in character, creative writing, Fiction, Life, Peter Wells and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to The Voyage Of Life

  1. Hoog says:

    Great post – motivational and meaningful. 👍⭐️

    Liked by 1 person

  2. beth says:

    this could be a ted talk tale – hope and perseverance, sometimes against all odds

    Liked by 1 person

  3. catterel says:

    Beautiful metaphor – some survive, some sink, some have to swim …

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Quite a departure, Peter, but one which highlights the fact that we are all rowing on our own, hopeful that we will, from time to time, stumble across a friendly shore.
    Well written.


  5. tiostib says:

    And sometimes, in the middle of forever, you look out from the dream you’ve been rowing and see in the distance, slowly coming toward you, another small boat, another heroic rower. and you know…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Jack Eason says:

    Reblogged this on Have We Had Help? and commented:
    From Peter…


  7. Robin says:

    Excellent Peter! Love this!

    Liked by 1 person

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