One Sunny Summer Day

If you know anything about me
it’s that I love the sea.
So, one perfect summer day –
restless, bored with my usual routine –
I left pixels, pen and paper
and took myself off to the shoreline park
a scant half-mile down the road.

I walked slowly, stopping to admire
neighbors’ gardens along the way,
feeling no particular urgency,
knowing the ocean would be there
to greet me with its neverending music
whenever I arrived.

The beauty of the day had lured many
to the park; the lot was full of cars.
I could hear children’s laughter
counterpointing the cries of gulls.
Seeking solitude, I struck off on a side path
that leads to a usually deserted point –
rocky, overgrown with shrubs and seaside flora –
overlooking the sea.

I breathed in welcome lungfuls of sharp salt air
as I walked, savoring the sunshine pouring from the sky.
Clouds sailed in that cosmic sea of blue;
my ennui evaporated in the embrace of nature.
As I rounded a curve in the sandy path
I was surprised to see I would not be alone,
for, standing at land’s end, staring out to sea,
was a man lost in contemplation of the waves.

Not wishing to intrude, I kept my distance
as I neared the point, but he must have heard me;
he turned and smiled.
I was struck by the otherworldly beauty of his face;
he seemed a traveller from another time.

“Beautiful day!” he called.
“It is indeed,” I replied as I approached.
We fell into easy conversation,
the kind strangers share upon first meeting,
small commonplaces on the weather
and our mutual love for the sea.
This lasted perhaps fifteen minutes,
then he said – somewhat reluctantly I thought –
he had somewhere else to be.

“Perhaps we’ll meet again another day,”
I said, drawn to his intelligence, his calm, his striking looks.
“Perhaps,” he murmured, almost to himself,
“if time and tide permit.”
Then, to my amazement, he reached to his waist
and pulled as if at an invisible zipper.
His lower body fell away, and, falling to the earth,
he slid smoothly into the sea,
scales shining in the sun,
tail thrusting strongly as he swam out
into the illimitable, welcoming vastness of blue.

© 2015 RC deWinter ~ All Rights Reserved

One Sunny Summer Day

RC deWinter

Fairfield, United States

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Artist's Description

Magic realism in narrative.

Artwork Comments

  • Ann  Warrenton
  • RC deWinter
  • devotee1
  • RC deWinter
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