Those two words have meant much to me over the last decade.
You can watch the clip that contains that quote here. It’s a memorable point in the somewhat forgettable second installment of Pirates of the Caribbean – The Dead Mans Chest.
Captain Jack Sparrow has spent two and a half hours of screentime running from cannibals, pirates, the English Navy, and Davy Joneses crew of fishmen. In the end, it was our plucky pirates own lusts that caught him up, and then he goes on to deliver that line that gives me chills, as he looks unquestionable death right in the face. “Hello Beastie”.
There’s no way out of this one for Jack. There’s no one to be guiled, no rope to swing away with, and no tricks left. It’s the true end.
Yet, even in those very last moments, when all else is taken away from us. When the future and the past are both forgotten, when all our hopes and our fears are swallowed up by the magnitude of the present, we still have a choice.
On one hand we can give up, let our pain make the decision for us and say “it’s too much, what could I possibly do”? On the other hand, we can take what we have been given, look right at what has come our way, and give even our final breath to the right course.