A sea of words has flowed lately. We all cried when we heard the harrowing stories of people dying in the sea surrounding our tiny country.

I say we all cried but some are still pig-headed and spout horrid words even about the dead, the sad dead in our Mediterranean.

This sea has seen many wars, battles, victories, celebrations and it has been a lifeline for countries, empires, peoples. It has seen tragedy, it has seen happiness, it is the salt of our earth, the succour and hope of many. Only God, Allah, Neptune, Vishnu or whoever rules the skies and the seas, knows what lies in its basin.

It is now the resting-place of too many people, too many people who left their homeland in boats in dreams of better days. May their death help us all find a solution or, if a solution is impossible, at least more and enduringly more compassion for all and not just those of our own creed, colour or condition.

Today they represent a people who are the suffering, the downtrodden, the desperate. So desperate that they trust brigands and criminals who take them on board boats not even fit for cattle. Today it is they—tomorrow it could be us on that boat escaping God knows what mishap, what condition, what desperation.

Our blue sea will remain blue but let us remember that it is now tinged with red and feel compassion. We are all human, the ones who died and the ones who still breathe in freedom. 

Independent journalism costs money. Support Times of Malta for the price of a coffee.

Support Us