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Most days I awake with a small capsule of creativity open in my mind like a lovely window flung adrift on a sunny day.  

I can lie for a while and dream up fantastic books, thrilling ideas and elaborate prose all in those moments when my eyes remain closed but my mind remains linked to that  part of me that is filled with all possibilities.

Today I awoke with one word sifting through the drifting veils. Embark. So I savoured it. Embark. Embark.

Bed in the morning

It's a word that, if said too many times, can start to sound different or at odds with all other sounds, however, when you feel it drift across your mind as a single and untouched amorphous entity you glance further.  

At first it seems like an entreaty hummed from a far horizon, a sound like a graceful twine once strummed. On closer inspection "embark" starts to surge closer on a tide as though momentum propelled and intention compelled. It gains resonance in it's flight to come closer and surges towards the coast of our mind. Then it announces itself like a gleaming leather suitcase dropped in a foyer. EMBARK!

And I like it! I like it because you can embark on whatever you wish. How delightful it would be if we all, instead of "having to do", " should get done" or "must finish", we simply embarked on every day, every task, every thing as though we were compelled by this work to simply journey without necessarily knowing the ending.

Old style boat

For centuries people have embarked. No one said, upon wishing to discover a new continent, "Today I am going to discover a new continent!" No, instead, compelled by a thought, an understanding, a falsity or truth, they said, "We will embark on a journey that may or may not get us to a new continent."

Had they but had the advantage of hindsight they might also have said, "Whether we get there or not, we know not. What we do know is that it won't be easy, we will suffer along the way indeed possibly some may not return, however, we shall also see great things, learn much that will astound and reach a destination within ourselves we would never have otherwise navigated had we not had the compunction to embark."

To embark is to take up a journey, a project a change in life and see it through.


When I think of the imagery that surrounds the word I think of an earnest, fallible but quietly determined soul waiting on a dock next to a swaying gang way. Up at the top of the gangway a sturdy vessel waits. At the soul's feet lies a brown parcel with hemp string tightly encasing it. In the parcel is usefulness, no more, no less, apart from a small token of sentiment placed by another. The usefulness has served this soul before and, although well worn, can be brought out to the air and flapped into straightness should it be needed again.

And this is how we embark upon anything. Not knowing the destination necessarily, or maybe in spite of  the destination. With or without the support of those we love, but, in spite of this we have our parcel packed and we have our eyes upon the steel of the vessel.

boat on the water

To "do" is simply to jump onto the nearest moving object and head off without intention, without the earnestness of quiet hope and thought. But to embark is to be filled with an adventurous fuel that tells us that whatever we are about to undertake will have its place in our web of experience and the journey we take will change the course of our life.

Embark. Embark. Embark.


Joanna RobertsonAbout Joanna Robertson
I am an ordinary woman whose life has featured the usual highs and lows that other lives feature. I live in Perth Western Australia with my husband and two sons, two dogs a cat and two weirdos and I enjoy interactions with people of all walks of life. I have mostly worked in the health industry where I find reward in optimising customer experience in the dental surgery. My passion is writing and I often use a bit of humour in my work. I believe in being positive no matter how I wake up feeling, it’s just a matter of changing the thought so I apply this premise to all aspects of my life, making sure that I am open to the ideas of others and to new possibilities. I believe that we need to continue to work on our lives, we are important and self-love is the key to loving others.