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Novanesia Manifesto I: A Call to the Driftwood

3 min read

By Kabeia Rineaki Brock Sutton Allen

As We Are

It feels different for everyone, but it is always felt. We may hide it under our legendary sense of humor but the laughter never lasts. Underneath the smiles that curve all the way to our eyes, there remains an unspeakable sadness. It sinks within us to depths no amount of shallow mirth can ever fill. The Seaborn are all cursed with the Disconnect. The crushing sense of loss when separated from the great waters of our birthright. We know who we are but cannot manifest it fully where we are.

The devastation of this disease remains constant, even internationally. The oceanic communities are fragmented. Adrift on the waves of distant seas; cast about in a diaspora of tragic, biblical proportions.

Such is the state of the Islander. While old tribes and new nations guard our ancestral lands it means little to the modern son of the sea or daughter of the depths, when they have been carried away from the source of identity. Our greatest minds have been robbed from us. And still every day, another family seems to disappear. On a boat. On a plane. Another house once occupied for generations, now empty.

And thus it is by force or forgetfulness, our people have been driven to settle on foreign continents, far from the sands of our homelands. Stripped of our soulpairing. Kept from the spiritkindling until the chill of complacency sets in.

But despite the distance, even the ones born across, far away from their cousins, their aunties, and their uncles- their souls remember. Ancient songs still bend their ear and a small flame, the genetic memory of the warmth of a tropic sun; It still burns. As if in contempt of the solid ground they now find themselves trapped on, a wave crashes within them. They know. Home is not here. We, all of us, born of the sea and brought to the land- we’re only visitors. We may speak the tongues of these cold lands, we may even walk as equals on their streets, and find warmth and waves that remind us of the home we were supposed to have. But were we destined to settle as peers with the earthbound? Are we destined to be landlocked? You know the answer. It roars within you like Ocean itself. We were meant to sail the seas. And not just the seas. But skies and stars themselves.


As We Might Be

It was once said that all roads lead to Rome. And while we islanders may not have such a storied capital to return to, we are reassured with the hope that all rivers run to the sea. And so must we. Despite the distance I know I can still reach out to my siblings, cousins, aunties, and uncles- the we who share the citizenship of a driftwood nation. To you I say this, let us gather. Let us speak as we are, family and friends. Let us remember, retell the stories, and sing again the songs of the sea. But let us grow so that we will be immortalized in such memories. The ocean calls to us, but now with the warning. Its strength threatens to turn on our beloved islands, to swallow our distant relatives still on those islands... And so it falls to us to build the boats that will soon sail to the redemption of our drowning forgotten.


To be continued in Novanesia Manifesto II.