The Storm’s Demand

Tidal waves came down with great force,
Veering the vessel far from its course.
The Captain commanding men here and there,
Feared for his vessel and its impending despair.
He begged and pleaded with the fierce sea,
“Is this to be my passage to eternity?”

He fought every wave in fear of his life.
Would he live through it all or die in the strife?
His heart ached with pain as he witnessed it all,
And the worst of it came when the mast did fall.
Screams of great agony shot through the sky
As a man washed overboard was drowned in his cry.

The crew forgot the duties they were meant to bear,
The pride of their trade suddenly lost in fear.
Captain and sailor wet and chilled to the bone,
Were each afraid of perishing completely alone.
The fallen mast had taken its toll,
And in the great vessel procured a hole.
Water gushed in and oozed from the sea,
Like the life giving blood from a man flowing free.

The ship cracked and groaned as it began to sink,
And each man aboard new his life on the brink.
Nothing left for this desperate humanity,
Than to plead to the One holding their destiny.
Down on their knees each soul said a prayer,
Sinking all the while in utter despair.

Just when all seemed hopeless and utterly lost,
A small and chaffed vessel from the mist appeared!
Twas but a humble fisherman’s boat being steered.
The crew in unified hope cried out for assistance,
And the little fisherman waved them on without resistance.
They impetuously threw themselves to the sea,
Each man aboard seizing this one opportunity!
Onward they swam towards that little boat,
Pleading with God that it should stay afloat.
One by one, a human form climbed up into safety,
Worn and tired from all the days misery.
As the last man swam to the boat and reached up for a hand,
They realized with one more they wouldn’t make it to land.
This man too, understood what this meant.
He began to cry bitterly against their intent!
He pleaded and begged that they make him room,
But surely one more would seal their doom!

All aboard looked at him with tears in their eyes,
But what could be done? If he is aboard then everyone dies!
Out of his fear, he groped desperately for the side.
The men pushed him off and all the more he cried!
Just as the waves began to carry them away,
One man suddenly stood and cried for them to stay!
And then unexpectedly this man hastily took off his coat,
And as he did so, he cast himself out of the boat.

All the others frantically called him back in,
But he cut through the waves, determined to win!
He battled and fought to reach the man left behind,
And did not stop until that man he did find.
Though exhausted and worn from his impetuous deed,
He put the man on his back and swam with great speed.
Finally reaching the safety of the small boat,
He pushed the man up and gave him his coat.

Every man’s face wet with tears from viewing the sight,
Ached how to now save this brave man from his plight!
No more could the little vessel withstand,
But how could they leave him who had acted so grand?
He called to them from that dark sea,
And said, “No tears, you are free to leave me!”
As the last words echoed to their ears,
The man disappeared beneath the storm of their fears!

He was gone! It all had happened so fast!
Such dedication and sacrifice to the last!
Each man said a prayer for the brave man who was gone,
And forever more in their minds his memory lives on.
To end this tale of selfless love and compassion,
You would probably like to know what man did the action.
Not the Captain, not one sailor from aboard the great ship,
Had given his life at that moments last whip.
But indeed twas the fisherman, who selflessly gave,
And traded his vocation for a watery grave.

Charise Schofield

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