I love this place.
I love the beach in wintertime, empty and quiet, and yet remnants of all the memories with indentations of summertime footsteps which never fade. Like our memories for example.
Like the times when the sun was hot and the waves were cool and the beach was lined with countless bodies, laying beneath the sun, tanning, and feeling the warmth of summer.
Perhaps this is why I love the beach during the winter months when nobody comes. Maybe this is why the sands exist, to absorb our footsteps and when the beach is empty, the sands absorb our footsteps when we walk to the water’s edge; to tell our secrets to the tide, to feel, to rid ourselves of our sorry confessions, or to release us from our moments of doubt.
This is my cathedral. This is my sanctuary and place of worship. This is where I honor those who have gone.
This is the place of my spiritual awakening (if there is such a thing).
I love the beach in wintertime.
I love finding little artifacts or lost toys or pieces of driftwood. I love to wonder about this.
Where did they come from?
How did they get here and where was their original station in this world?
How far have they traveled?
What happened to these pieces we find that are abandoned and washed up on an empty beach? I ask this because, in fairness, there is a certain relation that I understand; and while laced with emotion, there is an embodiment here between myself and the ocean.
There is a permission that allows me the right to feel without fear of being vulnerable.
It’s okay here.
The waves are anonymous and the sea never tells. The sands absorb our footsteps with no distinctive marks, which means we can walk for hours or minutes and no matter where we go, the sands will keep our secrets.
The tides breathe in and out, just as Mother Earth intended.
I think about the emptiness and the vacant sand and how the beach is loved by most on a seasonal level, to which I see as a disservice.
I see it this way because love is not seasonal. Love is not partial. Love is not about which days are prettier than others or which days are more comfortable.
Sometimes, nothing is comfortable. Sometimes there are days when nothing is pretty. There are days when the heart is heavy and the mind is full. There are times when we are clogged and our thoughts are congested. We just can’t get away.
There are times when we need something to clear the stoppage in our mind; so that we can move forward and think freely without overthinking or over analyzing everything around us.
The beach is this place for me –
This is where I go to let the outgoing tides come in and take away my stains.
This is where the waves come in and wash the shoreline of its unwanted debris and sediments.
I view this as The Great Mother’s way of cleansing us, her children, and washing us clean of our sorry thoughts and unwanted episodes.
I tell you she has no memory yet the sea knows.
She knows why I have come and what I have to say.
She knows that my love is pure, that it’s not seasonal nor is my love temporary or partial.
My love is full. Thus, my love is equally true yet my love does not come without imperfection.
But hence, this is my love and since this is all I have, my love is everything I can give.
God, I love this place.
I love the endlessness of the shoreline and the sound of waves that fold in and crash into the sands. I love the echoes of the sea and the sounds of gulls flying overhead, crying out to each other in loud caws above the sea. This is how they talk to each other. But more, this is how the beach speaks to me.
I love the grayness of the sky and the darkness of the ocean during a mid-winter walk. Snow caps on the sand dunes and although the winds are cold, there is a certain warmth here, which is otherwise known as my young memories from when I was a boy.
This is the bosom of the world. This is where The Great Mother nuzzles us in for a lullaby; to send us to our dreams or calculate our wishes and nuzzles to be nurtured and nourished. This is where my soul adjusts and where my heart recalibrates from its madness. This is where I tell my confessions; but more, this is where I make my amends and where I salvage myself with a petition of peace.
I know there are things that are beyond my control. I know that there is more for me. I know there is more to see and more to do.
I know that there are times when my thinking is a distraction.
Oh, but the waves and the beach and the way the sands absorb my footsteps, this is a place where I can be me.
I don’t have to worry about what’s coming next or who’s behind me. I don’t have to act or perform or anything of the sort, which is funny to me. I say this because I have never shared this with anyone – at least not to this detail or this wholeheartedly. But this is true and this is right therefore, it is only right that I share this with you here – as perfect as it is or as imperfect as I am, still, this is my love. This is all I have. This is everything. And now you know.
Now you know everything; my secrets and where I hide them and my love and how I propose this. No one else knows about this. Or at least no one else knows what this means to me.
Except for you, which is fine.
I think back to the moment of introduction. This is when my Father, The Old Man, took me to the beach for the first time in the winter on New Year’s Day.
Last night I crossed upon an old memory of a night on a fishing boat. We caught a bunch of bluefish. The Old Man came straight from work. We left at sunset and came back after midnight.
It was one of the most amazing trips ever . . .
I’ve been asking for a sign. Just a little one.
And who knows? Maybe this was it.
Maybe I need to make a pilgrimage or a special journey to find the tides, to let the sands absorb my stress, and to let the waves come in to wash away the sediments and the unwanted debris.
I wonder what she looks like now . . .
Point Lookout, New York. |
The Jones Inlet and the outgoing commercial boats
And the Loop Parkway Bridge during sunrise.
It’s got to be beautiful.