Stepping a few paces back from the water, I sat in the sand, watching the colourful display unfold. Another morning was beginning, like the day before, and the next, an endless progression of days that seemed to hold no meaning.
“Things fall apart, the centre does not hold” I remembered reading somewhere, and the words fit the pattern of my thoughts, thoughts of a teenager indeed prone to over dramatizing, trying to fit my life into a poetry of sorts.
My eyes were dry and scratchy, the lack of rest cracking the corners. One night? Two? More? I couldn't remember the last time I felt the peace of sleep and so wanted to be overcome.
I had gone there alone to walk the shore, to wonder at the beauty, to find something I didn't know I was missing without knowing what that something was. There is no treasure map to follow when you don't know what you're looking for. My hands dug deep in the sand around where I sat, the grit of it caking under my fingernails, not chewed but picked at, leaving them sharp, short and uneven. Sand sifted through hands that felt they could hold nothing and a heart that was learning not to try.
Then I spotted it, just an arms reach away, something catching the light in the sand. A small piece of glass, worn smooth around the edges, a milky opaque green created by water, sand and time. I placed it in the pocket of my jeans, rubbing it between my fingers and returned to walking the shoreline.
And all at once, there was the day, stretching out before me as I wondered, “what next?”
I was too young to have no purpose, no goals, nothing to aim at. No course was set. No wonder time seemed to stretch out endlessly, no scheduled separated the hours.
“I have nowhere to go and no one to be. Did I ever have a plan?” At fourteen I paced the shoreline and tried to remember dreams.