In the chain of command, he lies pretty far down, well, ‘stands’ I should say, or guards. In my novel he would play but a bit part – or is he really a Lord Jim* in the making, watching the steam ships dock, and wandering if he’ll one day jump aboard one, rifle and all, the setting sun his new back drop, with redemption his destination?
Except that as all sailors know and Conrad said, the seaman does not seek other horizons – and has little interest in the foreign land. For him it is the throb of the engines that cradles his existence, and the shining brass, the wheel confidently steady that both reassure him.
So allow the young soldier who stands guard a bit of dreaming as he gazes to the harbour, but admire his restraint from temptation, for he seeks to take his own strides.
As for me, I have already taken them; already made my mistakes.
to dream is part of a journey
but not all paths have destinations
-the sun still rises
*Lord Jim is by Joseph Conrad
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