I couldn’t resist the beauty of the nocturnal sky as I crept up on deck alone. A shimmering canopy of stars arched over the cobalt sea, falling to the horizon like a fishnet tugged tight by unseen hands. Flying fish played in the ship’s wake, their silvery tails and bellies twisting and flashing in the starlight. Leaning over the stern, I let the salt spray wash over my face. Boundless as eternity, time stood still. Only the low thrum of the engines, the slapping of the blue-black waves, and the starry dome overhead reminded me I was still on Planet Earth. As I watched, a poem I’d written in third-grade floated into my memory net, shiny as the flying fish.
Sailing boat, sailing boat, sailing away
Over the ocean and far away
Will you come back or will you stay there?
Where will you go? Where, where, where?
I still didn’t know the answer to that riddle but I was on a quest to find out. Where was home? Where did I belong?