I sit and look through window screens, the dunes
beyond made grainier to see. My ears
make company with sounds of wind and waves
and people mingled closely, woven tight
in summer symphonies. The wicker marks
me; curvy lines I know so well, like swells
and gusts, they greet my forearm like old friends.
The scratch of sand between my toes unlocks
cascading memories: unspoken words,
my conversations witnessed by the wind
alone. I listen to myself from years
ago, the sounds and smells and sights almost
the same. I am shrouded in remembrances
as clear, but closer than, reality.
I smelled wet towels hanging loose from hooks,
the smell of bodies intertwined with salt
and water, furniture passed its prime, bare feet
and family. Subtle scents familiar, dear;
so intimate as to defy report.
This yearly smell is with me now, it hangs,
it pulls me in, to commune with myself.
I came to this oasis, finally,
relaxed and soothed in sacred dwelling, full
with hope, respite in reach again. One week,
one awe-filled week in which I could at last
exist on my own terms. My loved ones joined,
we gathered all together to become
acquainted with ourselves anew. Away
in isolation free from shackled days
we came each year to seek identities,
to find that self, obscured by constant fog
of obligation, meant to be our own.
This year my task is daunting. Struggle plagues
my efforts. Shifting clouds so thick requires
a diligence made brittle, showing wear
and stress unusually strong. A haze
remains, a veil blockading progress; breeze
across my face unleashes floods, the dam
is out. I stand, walk down the ancient stairs
to bury feet in sand. Resolve possessed,
renewed; I take the flowing air, the touch
of wispy dune grass, pokes of pine needles,
my senses and the music of the sea,
I store to cloak my self when I am lost.
This is a poem about Bethany Beach in Delaware, where my family spends a week every summer. As always, feedback is welcome and very appreciated!