Creative Writing Prompt 3: The Vessel

As well as continuing to document my life with Mental Illness, I’ve been wanting to have a go at some ‘creative writing’.  After a quick Google Search I came upon this website, which provides 365 creative writing prompts.  Theoretically, this should be one each day for a year but I’m reluctant to commit to that at this point.  I will, however, endeavour to get through two or three a week as well as maintaining the other aspect of this blog.

I’ve decided to skip prompt 2, it being about unrequited love, of which I have little experience.  That brings me to:

3. The Vessel: Write about a ship or other vehicle that can take you somewhere different from where you are now.

Having lived on the coast all of my life, I’ve never, until very recently, paid much attention to the sea.  Not too long ago, I did notice it and what strikes me most is that one (in theory) could enter the sea at any point, and travel anywhere else in the World.  Supposing I did this; supposing I could sail, or even swim, I could enter the Firth of Clyde, reach the Irish Sea, the Atlantic Ocean and, from there, the World would be mine for the taking.


I could navigate the Atlantic Ocean all the way to the Eastern Seaboard of the USA, visit Boston, New York, Baltimore, the Appalachian Mountains, before sailing on down to Florida, Cuba and the Caribbean.  I could negotiate the Panama Canal all the way to the Pacific Ocean.  The possibilities at this point would be endless: Big Sur, Peru and the ancient Inca civilisations, Hawaii, Micronesia, Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Oceania.  I could sail North to Japan and China, visit The Great Wall.  I could see India.  I could cross the Arabian Sea and make my way down the Eastern coast of Africa, Tanzania, Kilimanjaro, around the aptly named Cape of Good Hope and back up the Western coast.  I believe Ghana has become popular, in recent years, for lower budget beach holidays.  I could make my way into the Mediterranean, sandwiched between Southern Europe (Spain, Malta, the Boot of Italy, Greece…) and the Northern coast of Africa (Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt…).

Yes, from this small, insignificant town on our tiny, insignificant planet, floating around in the infinite vastness of the Universe, I could effectively travel anywhere on Earth.

But I wouldn’t want to.  What would be the point?  because no matter how fast, how quickly I sailed, I’d always have an unwanted passenger…the Black Dog on my shoulder, who understands a measly one word of the English language, a word never uttered by me, but one which it seems to obey nonetheless.  That word?  Heel.

“If you need a friend, I’m sailing right behind…”

(Simon and Garfunkel, Bridge Over Troubled Water)


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