Port Of Morrow

Today while chatting with some friends at church I tried to think of what Star Wars race I tend to use for my characters, since the friends had some character sheets for a text-based Star Wars roleplaying experience. I could not remember the name of the race I use for my logistics pilots [1] at the time. Upon future research, the particular species in mind was the Devaronians, a species designed to have rather restless and wandering males lacking in aggression who were skilled pilots plying the lonely spaces between planets and spaceports. Even more striking, this species tends to look far more fierce and devlish (in the stereotypical red skin and horns) than they really are, having a surface appearance that belies their rather gentle and considerate nature.

I was reflecting on the places where I have lived, and all of them have been ports of some fashion. They have been exits on the interstate, railway stops, way stations for cattle trading routes [2], or ports on rivers or seas. To be sure, there are plenty of places in this world that are isolated from the cares and concerns of others, from the transmitting of news and from the marketplace of culture, goods, or ideas. Such places have never particularly held much interest for me. Whether I have lived in the country or the city, or in the suburbs or exhurbs, I have always tended to enjoy being a respected and honorable part of networks, a port and marketplace for others to share their lives, their struggles, their hopes and dreams and ideas. Having spent a fair amount of time in airports (though far less time in seaports), I have always greatly appreciated the transportation of people and goods and ideas, especially good ones.

Not all ports are used for that purpose. Not all places where there is great potential find that potential used. It is only when there are people longing for connections with others that those potentials tend to be utilized. The great ports of West Africa, for the most part, tend to be relatively unused, as they have been once enough slaves and gold had been taken from those haunted lands. Even today, a visit to slave forts like Elmina in Ghana is a dark experience, a reminder of the merchandise of souls engaged in by corrupt men. When that trade ended, there ceased to be an interest in more mutually beneficially commerce that was based on grounds other than exploitation. Far more congenial are the local markets where one has a great deal of love and respect for one’s fellow traders, and where one can develop trust over a great deal of time in the materials of day-to-day life. Some ports have even been abandoned when silted harbors led former seaports to end up miles inland, cut off from the life-giving trade that once filled them with hustle and bustle.

In imagining the terrain of my own psyche, I have imagined a fairly complicated topography with a busy and friendly port, full of learning and trade with the outside world connected with a capital city deep within canyons, surrounded by ruins and massacre sites and a large expanse of lands, perhaps steppes with swamps and forests and gently rolling hills but lacking in obvious or defensible natural boundaries. Such is the life that I have lived, which has given me a great deal of empathy for others in the same sort of situation. In such a situation, some people will only look at the ports and think of the great wealth that travels through them, while others will only see the vulnerability of the area, or the way in which roving bands of merchants might seem a bit threatening to those who wish to keep themselves or others in sheltered areas. Such people probably don’t appreciate a busy but orderly port such as those which I appreciate, so long as there are no traffic jams or trains in my way.

[1] See, for example:




[2] https://edgeinducedcohesion.wordpress.com/2011/03/06/cork-station/

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
This entry was posted in Musings and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Port Of Morrow

  1. Pingback: Because I Like Tormenting Myself | Edge Induced Cohesion

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