Tuesday, October 25, 2011

deep love blue

Hoping this short story came out well...

Alexander had been unhappy for months; he did not know why, he couldn’t put a finger on this growing numbness in his and head in fact his whole body.

His unhappiness was so confounding in fact; he had taken to shouting obscenities at any commonplace setting he chanced upon: a beach, a sunny lake, a condominium complex. The beach had been his favorite. Here he would stand in the rolling waves, wet up to his midline, and shout into the sea air his contempt for his frazzled mind. When he was finished telling the waves off, telling them his track record of awkwardness, introspection and tendency to feel rather asexual for lack of sexual drive towards anything or anyone, he would march back to the beach, head hung low, and fall onto his knees in the soft sand.

Well, after a while kneeling, he would look up and heave an exhausted and mournful sigh. Then he would gaze at the passerby, wind at his back, wrapping his head and body in a heavy saltiness.

It happened on one day when Alexander has completed this seaside ritual and was kneeling in the sand, about to get up and walk home when he heard a contented cackle- that is just what it was, a contented cackle, a benign snickering of sorts. Alexander turned towards the noise, half expecting a seagull to be sitting there, laughing into the air at what a fool Alexander is! Why, how simple a seagull’s life is and how confusing this Alexander’s was!

He half planned to dash madly at it and as he was getting up to do so, quite realized that the source of the snickering was not an anthropomorphic gull but an old man, sitting on the same plane as Alexander but facing the waves instead.

The old man looked over and nodded, smiled and cackled again, looking away. This time Alexander knew it was directed at him.

“And do you think I am funny, sir?” he asked reproachfully.

The old man simply turned to him and laughed again. “I think you are funny because you do not think so. Why, boy, I bet you’ve come down here every day this week, alone and miserable and shouted at the waves.” The wiry hair poking out of his ears curled into taunting smiles.

“Some would think you’re a madman, you know!” He fell into a fit of giggles.

“And what if I am?” Alexander considered aloud.

“Oh, son. Misery doesn’t make us mad. You think life is sending you the same thing over and over, never cutting you a break, sharper witted than you, just like these waves. In and out, spitting back your desires.

Well let me tell you something. If you keep frowning and think you’re getting the same crap over and over, you’re wrong. Each wave is different. Each tide has different offerings to the patient beach. You just have to see it” said the old man rather triumphantly. Then he quite simply laid back, closed his eyes, and remained quite still. So still in fact, after two minutes had passed, Alexander watched as a seagull walked onto the old man’s chest and fell asleep quite contentedly. Alexander wondered if the man had died.

He pivoted and turned to sit, facing the sea. For once, everything shifted. The waves came in soft and intimately hissing. And at the very moment, he fell in deep love with the sea.


  1. That's very well written. Do you write consistently?

    FYI, when I write I mostly cast the protagonist as a guy for some reason. Maybe it gives some distance. xx

  2. Thank you! I do write semi-consistently, poems mostly. I do too! Guy protags are easier to write about! I like how you phrase that, "some distance", so true.

    thanks for reading, as always!

  3. Oh, I like this! I love how you've painted the interaction between the old man and the boy. It feels real and soft. "The wiry hair poking out of his ears curled into taunting smiles," is a small detail, but just from that one line I can see this man who's truly amused at the sight he's witnessed.