For as long as I can remember, I’ve had a fascination with the ocean. I’m not sure exactly what draws me to it. But seeing it always leaves me feeling exhilarated and at peace at the same time. Regardless of the time of day, regardless of the weather—I could watch it for hours.
The wind greets me first.
It blows past me
Carrying echoes of your vastness.
Within my blood
The scent of salt
Laces the air along with
The spice of aquatic grasses.
The cries of seabirds.
They are strong, fierce
Taking part in your abundance
And I quicken my steps to join them.
The asphalt below my feet gives way
Slowly, at first,
Tiny stones from another place and time
They mingle in crevices and shadows
Transforming into the faintest of carpets.
As I rush forward
My steps join those of the ones who arrived before me
Who created valleys,
hollows in the ground
Until I must slow my pace.
I am reminded:
—I must approach you with respect.
And so I crest the dunes before me
Eat step embraced by the soft sands.
Past the fawning grasses,
The jubilant birds,
I eagerly await my first glimpse.
How will you appear today?
Draped in folds of cerulean and lapis?
Wrapped in the softest of grays?
Will you be adorned in sprays of white lace
That leap in your wake?
Or will you be surrounded
in gossamer silks
that billow gently around your still form?
It seems an eternity—
It seems but a moment—
Yet there you are.
Your majesty stretches
beyond the limits
of the horizon.
I stand mesmerized as
You reflect that light, airy sky
Drawing lines before me
Sending particles high into the air
Who return home after a fleeting moment
In brilliant strokes of white.
Patterns waltz across the surface
There one instant
Gone the next
—replaced by something
—more beautiful than the last
—a complex canvas that cannot be captured.
A million shades dance before my eyes.
I cannot help but follow
Your every move
I rush from one moment
and another one, there
I cannot catch you, no matter how hard I try.
Every second you seem within reach
But my net again comes away empty.
If I were to reach my hand into the cool waters
And pull it out again
I’d be left with the tiniest of rivulets
Until they, too, fade away
Leaving nothing but the memory of salts and minerals in their wake.
Overwhelmed, I am mute
I stand unmoving.
I let your power unfold before me.
This is a play that will never end
On a stage that has no edge.
However many times I must leave you,
Surely this is no final good bye.
Wherever I travel
My feet will always make their way back to you.