Sunday, 31 July 2016

The Call of the Ocean

I miss the ocean. The feel of the salt spray which seems to get into your pores seems like a face mask by nature. There is no need for music when you have the crash and hiss of the waves and they hurl themselves on shore and cling with wet foamy fingers to the rocks and sand as they are dragged back to the ocean's cradle. From time time to the wind which roars in an unending crescendo is punctuated by the staccato of a seagull shriek in a measure of three beats. Everything comes in threes. In low tide there is sand , wet, glistening taupe of billions of fine grains and smelling of brine and seaweed and something primeval. In high tide there are the swaths of beach rocks in greys, russets, sandstone, blackish-grey, and white like opaque marbles shot through with silica. So many individuals in shape and size and calling to my eyes like sirens of stone. There is driftwood twisted, scoured, stripped free of bark the white grey bone fragments of trees. Their voices can be felt with the hand like the sound of the ocean in a seashell. Each line once flowed with sap blood and each knot held up a branch in salute to the sun and in supplication to the moon. The ocean which has rocked them with its berceuse, stirred them in its churning and yearning,  has tired of them and cast them shore-ward to snatch fresh fodder from the earth in the tug of war it ever plays. 
Indian Head from Stephenville Crossing, NL 

There are other refugees finding the banks of the sea. Shells; mussels with their blue and white markings like rough pottery, sea urchins like bone pincushions, fiddler crab husks intact or in part their fiddling days gone silent, shark eyes which my mother called conchiloos their spirals inside often exposed like internal staircases with their grandeur eroded, whelks with their unicorn horns, black clams paled to white, scallops as rare as angel wings in pairs. 

Tattered rope frayed in yellow, dull orange or blue- green like locks of synthetic mermaid hair.

Fragments of lobster pots spat up as if in revenge for so many death sentences. 
Broken bottle bits in green brown and white and if you are very lucky in blue. The newer the shinier, but no friend to fingers. The older sandpapered to opacity, frosted to smoothness, almost sugared for the fingers. 
Indian Head St. Georges NL

The Johnny and Jane- come- lately-es : plastic truck wheels, a doll's torso one arm reaching, a piece of CD its disco dancing days past and the pale pink and white torpedo cases of tampons lurking like unexploded detritus to startle the treasure seeker. 

I miss feet crunching over the rocks, Each step bone-jarring, Each step the rocks grabbing at your shoes then receding in small squadrons in depressions that require agility to move on. Their muttering in rock language a challenge and an exhortation to life, to perseverance. 
My Dad with dreams of past and future

I miss the moods of the ocean. Its greenness, its blueness, its green-blueness, its greyness, its inkiness, its almost silverness, A fickle fashionista of colour but always with touches of lace as if she would always be ready with handkerchiefs in times of tears, cold or fine dining. 

Shorelines change with the passage of time, wind and waves, but the ocean is timeless. It calls to us down to our inner beings, Sirens to our very cells and primeval memories. 


  1. I have no words, this is amazing. You are one talented lady.

    1. Thanks so much Ann. You are very kind. I love to write and take photos and I love the ocean. When you put them together it is bliss for me.