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nature writing part 5 (two writings- wind and lake)

nature writing part 5 (two writings- wind and lake)

Posted February 4th, 2018 by Swallowtail

by swallowtail
in new york/massachusetts

I am dancing around the world, gathering handfuls of dry leaves and spinning as they try to fall, flinging saltwater into the air in a fine spray, ruffling feathers on birds and fur on creatures. I dive down to a shallow cove of shattered boulders splashed a wet black by the sea and linger there, running along every surface. Gulls waltz with me above the rocks, effortless on long black-tipped wings, eyes sharp and feathers smooth. Tall grasses dip gracefully under my hands, a shimmering sea echoing the one just beyond. Here my voice is easy to hear, but I’m limited to whispers instead of the screaming roar I can muster on open plains. Sometimes whispers are better, and today I delight in these little sounds. I rake through the grass and gather bits of it that have died and seeds eager to move and envelop them in the wind, sending them tumbling landward. There is little to no sand among these rocks, so instead I rely on the plants to make me visible. They fly onwards, to new beginnings and bitter ends. Back at the ocean, I dash frenzied among the crashing waves, sending salt spray to new heights along the steep rocks, filling the air with seawater’s choking sting. I tumble along the coast, rushing inland from over the sea, bringing faint remnants of the seashore with me.


    The lake lies calm and endless, stretching past the horizon. At first glance, it is an ocean, until I note the gentle waves that barely reach my calves, and the air that lacks the distinctive tang of the ocean. If I wanted to, I could drink the water, but I don’t. The moon hangs full and low on the horizon, deep orange scraping the top of the glassy water. This gently lovely color shines across the top of the water and to where I stand, highlighting the tops of barely there cats paws and the beginnings of waves. It lightly touches the smooth wet stones of the beach and sparks a soft glow that slowly fades, then returns with renewed vigor each time a wave washes delicate lace edges over the multicolored stones. Stars sprinkle their ancient light through the velvet indigo of the sky, and each one appears mirrored but distorted in the lake. If I try and look at one straight on, it fades back into the fabric of the sky, only to reappear shyly in the corner of my eye when I turn my gaze to one of its neighbors. The young, tangled woods around me are alive with cicadas, and their humming fills the world. This night is full and haunting, the sort of night that persuades the world with soft words to remember it. There is nowhere I’d rather be than right here, watching it all.


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