I live by the sea.
It’s not just any sea – I live at the edge of a wild sea.
When in a rage she’ll rip a kelp forest from the sea floor and heave it onto the beach in layers as deep as a tall man’s waist. Then, when the fly eggs hatch in the rotting blades and stipes, she’ll come at night and take it all back for a feeding frenzy of fish and crabs and abalone.
It’s a sea that tempts you to lean into her week-long gusts with nothing in your head but fears and doubts. It is a sea that calls you to her. You see this when drivers park their cars on the narrow shoulders of the winding roads that snake along her shoreline. And they sit and stare into, what can only be, themselves.
It is the sea where I walked when my father passed away – and then my mother too, suddenly – staring into the waves, hoping for a voice, comforting and profound, to emerge from the roar, but nothing. Only a sense, both dreadful and inviting, that I had to turn around, face the mountains, and go on.
I live by the sea. It is a sea that gives no answers but is somehow the answer itself.