“SS Sagaing: WW2 shipwreck refloated by Sri Lanka navy”


“A British passenger ship that sank after it was bombed in a Japanese air strike in World War Two has been raised off the Sri Lanka coast after 75 years.”
     — BBC article, 31 March 2018
On Easter Sunday, I learned the SS Sagaing was raised
from its wreck in Trincomalee Harbour, ninety-eight
divers resurrecting it from the sea’s depths. Bombed, sunk:
her heart was cracked to take on water till she settled
and was made into a pier, other ships tethering to
her bones, broken. As the berthing began
to outgrow the harbor, it was decided to dewater
her hull till she floated again. A fortune
cookie told me, Water not only can keep a ship
afloat, but also can sink it, which the Sagaing knew
before she was excavated of her contents, emptied
and blown open, reworked into sailing once more.
My oracle cards this Easter read master narcissism,
which, as I am not a narcissist, I took to mean open
yourself to the world, as the Sagaing surely was
opened over these seven months, foundations
strengthened and superfluities stripped
till she could ascend again: not seaworthy
until she was given new sides and had known
the work of many hands—deft and careful—
bearing her up from her drowning. We return
if we are lucky, to how we were made, despite our grave
changes: gaping sides sealed, body renewed, beloved
awaiting our return. The last card I drew was rebirth.