The Ship That Doesn't Sink
We lost another student yesterday. No one is releasing any official information, but unofficially, it seems that she chose to ingest a lot of illegal stuff, all at once.
I knew this student only a little; she hung out in my study hall. A pretty mild-mannered kid; came in of her own accord during her lunch, just to read quietly and sit next to her friends.
My colleagues who taught her are hurting. It's always hard, but there is something particular about a student who doesn't show warning signs or give cries for help, who is high functioning and friendly and then, suddenly, is gone.
On the bottom of one of the last assignments that she handed in, she wrote a riddle.
What kind of ship never sinks?
And beneath, upside down: Friendship.
My teacher friend who collected this assignment is haunted by it. Was it a cry for help? A clue? Why didn't the ship hold her up? Why did she sink?
I said another way to see it is that the ship is still sailing--we in our arrogance assume that because we can't see the person and talk to her anymore, that she's gone. Sure we want her to be here, and whole, and well. The best is lost
. Maybe it is a message, though: that friendship reaches across the veils we know so little about. It doesn't sink, ever.