Thursday, August 09, 2007

"I must go down to the sea again..."

We do not use alarm clocks here on the Island. We just wake up at the bird's call (or the hum of the air conditioner.)

Today I woke early and declared my intentions to watch the sunrise on the beach. Philip (not an early riser) decided to join me. It was still dark so we put on the hall light just to manage the steep steps and stumble out to the morning.

As we arrived at the beach the crescent moon become silhouetted against the hazy dark gray of early dawn. It looked so like a child's cradle.

We walked over the dune and the sight was so stunning we just stood for a few moments. The beach was perfectly empty of humans in all directions. We were already barefoot so we went down to the water's edge to walk and watch the magic of dawn. As light appeared the water become light gray and we were able to distinguish tracks of all types in the sand. Ghost crabs. Sandpipers. Seagulls. Turtles. They have all been busy last night while we were sleeping.

The sun did not appear on the horizon, but hid under the hot steam of the coming day. We walked back and climbed up to the lifeguard post to watch the day. We talk about science and shadows and waves and colors when all of a sudden the sun appeared part way up in the sky. It was small and bright red and looked as if it were a small rubber ball suspended on a string.

We sat in silence as we watched folks begin making their pathway down to the beach as well. A fisherman cast out two lines in hopes of his dinner...a young couple put down a blanket to watch the day and an older woman just walked....

We stopped for breakfast at the Pony Island Inn and visited with local folks before coming home to start our day.

It could not have been more wonderful for my last full day on the island before leaving for Indiana. Sigh.

Sea Fever
by John Masfield

I must go down to the sea again

To the lonely sea and sky

And all I ask is a tall ship

And a start to guide her by.

And the whale's kick and the wind's song

And the white sails shaking

And a gray mist on the sea's fare,

And a gray dawn breaking.

Lou Ann
Lou Ann Homan-Saylor lives in Angola, Indiana which is nestled in the hills of Northern Indiana and spends her summers on the wind swept island of Ocracoke. You can find her gardening or writing late into the night under the light of her frayed scarlet lamp. She is a storyteller, a teacher, a writer, an actress and a collector of front porch stories.