Short Stories of the Unknown: The Beach

Colossal. Just absolutely colossal. So unbelievably vast and voluminous. The salt water, now, rushing up over and under, and all around. Surrounding.

Each wave momentous in the way it mounts quickly, or slowly onto the crest of the wind’s work, working for many many stretch of miles from a place radically different from here. Unbounded joy, the feeling of weightlessness as the wave catches, swirls and tosses you like a roundly shaped grain of sand. Round as an individual, collectively shapeless, sticky when wet. Sticking onto everything even as the warm water lashes and laps at your legs on your ascent back up the beach.

The sun dazzling and bearing down on everything except the emotion of the place which is unperturbed. Up now you see the gang of footballers dancing and playing a jingle of sand, sweat, athleticism and ball. The white women casually walk across, the black women scamper, gleefully. The salt water never too far away, creeping on the shore near where the world begins and the ocean relinquishes.

The huts of restaurants stock the upper reaches of the shore, where your procession is waiting for you. The wind’s work not done yet. Cold now, it’s gentle conversation with your washed skin, sensitive to motions. Goosebumps along your shoulder to your pleasantly aching forearm reaching down for the towel you call yours. Wiping the earth off you, drying the earth off you, feeling the earth of you.

You look back down the beach. Everything frozen but in motion. A picture of unchanging time.

The stories we tell have a life of their own and they work between the realm of what is real and how we conceive that reality.

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