Saturday, December 26, 2009


I love how standing next to the ocean makes you feel small. I think the size of the ocean alone could account for this, but then there’s its permanence—the idea that it was here long before we could run along next to it, and will remain here long after our footprints have been washed away. When I stand at the edge of the ocean, I can feel how time and space come together at the point where the tide sweeps against my ankles. And the rush of retreating water seems to carry something of my spirit to another season, another space. It’s a perfect retreat. It’s like touching God. Sometimes, I pick up rocks along the beach that have been washed smooth, polished by the flow of time. In gripping a stone’s smooth surface, I imagine the rough edges that have since been buffed away. What coarse textures were shed to reveal these subtle yet intricate shades underneath? I smile because I consider that maybe if I lay next to the ocean long enough the same will happen to me. And yet sand, water, and time do not greet all with equal kindness. Empty shells scattered along the shore lie faded, splintered, and exposed atop the sand. The colors these shells once paraded have been bleached white by the sun, creating a skeletal beauty. It is an overwhelmingly hollow aesthetic which reminds you that the life that once resided within the heart of these ornate coverings has long since disappeared, leaving behind a brittle, substance-less carapace. I often wonder what my future holds, what purpose I have, and what kind of character I will grow to embody. My greatest fear is that I will lead a journey resembling that of these empty shells scattered along the shore.

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