I don’t know when the ocean seeped into my blood.
When the salt became my oxygen.
How the shrill of seagulls became my morning aubade; the slapping of halyards my soothing lullaby.
My spirit lifts at the rush of the surf. The spray fills me with desire.
Earth is a stranger. Land holds me no charms ... but a few points to navigate by, and then I go on.
I am a woman mis-cast. In the grip of a (sea) monster.
The siren has sung. Conventional life cast upon the rocks.
All else seemly is surrendered – sacrificed – for the whisper of the sea.
When did the sunset become my Cinemax? The nomadic moon, my beacon?
FLASHBACK Dec. 29, 2002
I went out back to dump the trash and heard the waves banging so furiously against the beach I had to go down and see. I put on a heavy jacket. The worst of the wind was blocked by the high berm built to keep the sea and houses from meeting, but when I climbed clumsily to the top of the rock-strewn sand dune. the wind whipped my ears. For a moment I was envious of the only other person I saw, standing a few yards away in a big hooded parka.
The ocean called.
Enormous swells barreled toward the beach, curling high and majestic, tauntingly. They crested prematurely in the shallows, filling the air with a briny vapor and spreading a frothy lawn at the foot of the berm.
The wind drove hard from the west, where the sea ended in a crisp, black swipe, and a jumble of lavender clouds teased of exotic places in the distance.
My ears hurt from the blustery cold. I could hear it accelerate with each gust, pitching up and up in a frenzy.
The ocean called.
Oh how I want to get back to sea -- but me? Broken*, broke.
I stumbled along the top of the berm to the lifeguard shack, and went home.
* this was just a year after I’d been Humpty-Dumptied and put back together, and had just learned how to walk again.