I haven’t been in a sailboat for years but I remember the feeling of flying across the surface of the water. The spray in my face, the wind buffeting against me — these sensations linger, decades after I last hoisted myself into a boat from a slippery Martha’s Vineyard dock.
I remember, too, the rudimentary lessons which my host gave. Look down, look out, look down, look out — constantly gauging where I’m going but also monitoring where I stand in the water. Check for hazards – here, there — always.
Once in a while, look backward, to remember where you’ve been.
Now I get my bearings in life the same way. I take stock of where I stand, look forward to measure the possibilities, and occasionally I glance over my shoulder, in the pages of my blog, at old and fading poetry written in my journals, to recall what I felt and experienced. I respect those who say they only live in the present, not thinking about the past or the future. But that doesn’t work for me. The past formed me; the future calls me; the present surrounds me. Each contributes to the richness of my life.
It’s the twenty-third day of the thirty-second month of My [Endless] Year Without Complaining. Smooth sailing with the occasional iceberg. Life continues.