In the early morning hours, the sea is a loud silence. It is the only thing you hear, save a for a seagull, save for the sound of your own breath as you walk carefully along the path toward the water. The lilies have grown in, making you slip as you walk, they cling to the seagrass where they can. Buttercups bloom early.
Before the sun rises the sea is a sleeping beauty, massive and rocking even in this small cove. Where it meets the horizon there is a belt of baby bonnet, a lighter shade where the sun will crest through. From there is fades back to the heavens, a gradient darker until the midnight where a few stars still shine.
Nothing will teach you how many shades of blue there are like living at the sea in the winter.
In the cove, the water moves in every direction and all at once, a swirling basin that obscures everything beneath. When the tide drops there are clusters of chocolate colored sea rocks so sharp they’ll cut your fingertips, covered in muscles and barnacles that cling to the rock when the water recedes. Carpets of vibrant green seaweed swell around the edges, a color you see only in the sea that reminds me of coastlines I’ve never seen. So wet it looks like you could drink it.
We too have tides, I tell myself, but they do not show so easily. There are times when we are nothing but swell and circumstance, and others where everything recedes and shows our sharp edges, the things that cling even when the waters are gone.
The birds fly so near to the water I cannot tell the difference between their lithe bodies and their shadows skirting the waters. At the full moon, the sea rises up as if it wants to press itself against the sky. A full moon is a full sea, you can feel the conversation between the two.
They say the whales are migrating right now, but I sit here every day and haven’t seen one. They are heading south to Mexico and when they come back they will have babies with them. It seems to be the case with everything these days. Perhaps it is just the season. Perhaps it is just what I pay attention to. Perhaps it doesn’t mean anything at all.
When the sun finally rises the sea wears murky glass-bottle-green ribbons, a vase left in a window sill too long. The belt along the horizon glows a muted buttercream, perhaps a shade of ivory. Then it fades back into a sky blue we know so well, that we see it even when our eyes are closed. Everything settles a little when the lights are on or perhaps it just becomes more familiar.
The tide will drop in a few hours and I’ll walk the tide pools looking for starfish and sea urchins in deep swollen purples and spindly black needles. Every time the sea goes out it takes something with it and shows us something new.
Same but different, I have a feeling that makes sense to you.