Sunday Scribblings: Ocean
From this website
Yeah, this is a bit of a strange one. But this is what came out.
A lone woman squints daggers at the ocean. That’s the image that comes to mind. A bit trite, isn't it? Almost as common as the old “hair as golden as the sun” simile. Does it matter to you that her hair IS that golden? It does to her--she views it like a promise betrayed. All her life, she heard the “blondes have more fun, dearie” line and made the mistake of taking it seriously. The people who told her that, were the kind who liked to toss clichés over their laughing shoulders like salt.
She was not this way.
So what can I tell you about her that would matter? Perhaps you want to hear about her childhood…that seems like a popular place to start. Begin at the beginning. Well, she wasn’t much for babyhood, and she sat childhood out. Never had much use for dolls and trucks. Fake things. She was after something real.
And what would that be? Her lined face doesn’t tell me much. Perhaps if I’d paid more attention to the instructions in my writing books, you know, the ones about creating an unforgettable character, I’d be able to look deeply at her and divine a ghastly secret, or at least a few jangling skeletons in the closet. But that’s not what I see.
She wanted to be grown, grown, to wear flowers in her hair and silver high heels and go dancing with a different man every payday. She was certain that this was all she could ever hope from life, and unlike most of us, she got exactly what she wished for. One day, sooner than she expected but later than she hoped, she was the woman who danced, the lights glowing blue, then red, then green, then blue again on her golden hair.
So she got what she wanted, you say? Then what’s the story? Well, take another look at her face. Regret has formed that face, blurred the lines around her eyes. Sags in her cheeks.
The waves moan their endless song. They say sometimes, if you listen carefully, you can hear voices in the ocean. Voices of the people you loved, or who loved you. Maybe the lone woman shifted, watched the sand near the feet grow light and then dark from the pressure of her toes as the water lapped near her. Was she straining to hear? And did she?
Stubborn. She won’t say.
Was it one great defining event that changed everything? That would certainly make my job easier. To be able to point to a moment and say "see, that's how it all went wrong!"
But that’s not the way it happened. Small moments, so small they didn’t even look like choices, and she STILL doesn’t like to see them that way. Too much time waiting around for the wrong man, and then more time waiting for him to go. Too much focus on him, and not enough on the job that just sat and spread, but went nowhere. Not enough ambition. Too much fear. Maybe those are the same things.
“I've always wanted to see the ocean, you know.” She confessed to Mr. Wrong, once, at twilight. It wasn’t like her to talk that way, halting, and at that moment, he loved her for it.
“I’ll take you, baby. We’ll see it together. Promise.”
Then he never mentioned it again.
See, I was paying attention to the writing books after all! Conflict.
Except…it’s not, because he never did it and she never expected him to. That’s what existed between them.
She never did lose that old dream, though, to be taken to see the ocean. It seemed like the kind of thing someone could peg a new start on.
So here she is, a lone woman, who is choosing to stand on the edge of the shore for the first time, who had to take herself. Maybe she’s not squinting daggers at anyone. Maybe she’s just really, REALLY trying to see.
And that makes all the difference.
For more dips in the ocean, go here.
Labels: sunday scribblings