The relationship between person and ocean, defined through the eyes of the one stood watching the waves from the shore.

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Public Domain

At the water’s border you’ll find me;
eyes fixed on the horizon,
skin lashed with salt
from the ocean’s inward breeze.

I find the sea entirely hypnotic,
my siren;
a leviathan unto itself,
living and breathing with tidal swells
that lull but never leave.

My spirit sits where the sea meets the sky
so my feet decide to plant roots here
as the view is clear
and the waves crash against my anchors.

At high tide I stand
as close to the water as I can
and stare at the sea
as the ocean drifts into me.

The seasider inside my soul
needs an edge to feel free;
the endless hills and fields
of the country close me in:
it’s claustrophobic
but I’m stoic and resolute,
so I conclude to mute my despair
when I can’t see the sea
or taste salt in the air;
but I’ll never be free
unless I’m there:
at the ocean’s edge.

Let me drift on the waves,
I will float on the tides;
the sky burns pink and red
as the sun falls and hides
and I’m left on a blanket
of shimmering water,
bathed in a green flash
that dissipates the instant it appears.

This endless surface of purple black ink
that holds me aloft,
punctuated by reflections of stars and gods
whispering in my ears;
it sings as I descend here
into the abyss.

It’s warm below,
deep in the belly of the ocean;
this home,
a perfect womb.

I return
from whence I came
but the sea is not to blame.

The water holds me,
its arms surrounding and grounding;
reminding me that even as I float free
my feet,
like trees,
are rooted on the land
and I stand and see
I’m where I’ve always been:
at the water’s border you’ll find me.

Seb Reilly is a writer, fiction author and occasional musician. He lives by the sea in Thanet, Kent, with his family and two cats.

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