The water was calmer in the morning than at any other time of
the day, filmy, thick and slick, smooth and silky, floating,
drifting, shifting, mercurial, with a heaviness, an apparent
purpose, a movement from some deep, pounding heart.
A feather from a silent passing seagull fell from just above
the edge of the sea and sky and across the small air rivers,
floating, shifting like the water across unseen edges of
influence, coming gently to rest on the surface, causing tiny
but growing concentric circles there. The reflections of the
clouds created an illusion of endless horizon. Schools of small
fish darted ghostlike and together in close, orchestrated
movement, never breaking that separation of sea and sky,
remaining just beneath the surface, stirring the cauldron, the
rich broth of life.
Gulls were obnoxious in the early
mornings, sea-cocks, crowing just before the sun began its
intense azimuth upward toward midday and then down into the
cooling rays of evening. The most you'd hear from Pelicans was
the wonderful whoosh of tandem wings, a concert of air passing
through feathers, as they flew over the hut, headed into the
first bait-boils of the day.
The gray dim pre-dawn glow slowly morphed, with no visual
points of change, to a stray ray of sunlight, then another,
casting colors over the offshore islands. Cumulous clouds,
remaining from the rare storm of the night before, caught these
colored rays and kneaded them, spun sugar candy, into full and
vibrant shades of yellow, orange, red and threw these against
the blue canvas of sky and water. In the distance the black
forms of Gulls, Pelicans, Boobies, Cormorants, Frigates were
silhouetted against this full color backdrop, awaiting the first
stirring of bait.
I sat amongst the smooth round stones on this beach taking in
the scene. A world at rest. The edges of the water in the bay
met tentatively with the edges of the stones, small and worn
sides of both substances seemed to touch and retreat, touch and
retreat. In my head, the music of the previous evening was
swelling, gently flowing strings working in harmony, each
behaving predictably. All was in concert, all was at peace.
Behind me is a slight crisp sound, scoop through crushed ice,
a head of lettuce splitting; a disturbance of my stones. This
is no cause for concern. It is cause for celebration. Michael
and Kevin are awake. Tiny feet have rearranged a few stones
forever; the world will not suffer.
My boy's have been sharing my scene from their cots, facing the
bay in our thatched hut, open to heaven, watching the natural
unfolding of a day, a thing they may not have previously
considered in their young years. A day is an event that
requires an unimaginable amount of energy, the turning of
incomprehensively large planetary, solar and satellite bodies on
earth-crusted axes. Our blue sphere spins and up comes the sun.
A game of marbles.
In cities we get up and spin our days into work that feeds
our selves and our systems, with purpose, looking only inward.
At a bay in Baja one feels more in concert with the elements,
with nature; the view is outward, dreaming, dreamlike, cast
toward distant horizons.
My boys, my spheres, are beside me now and I take the
opportunity to accept and to give groggy early morning hugs from
tender, sun-darkened torsos, and for now I can stop wondering
about those things of which I am most curious and unaware. I
can stop for a while now and perhaps awaken in Michael and Kevin
an equal or greater curiosity of the mysteries of the universe.
To cause to wonder, to imagine a meaning. Or just to accept a
warm moment, a beautiful scene presented, gratefully, at a most
peaceful moment of the day. Or, best, I can learn from my
sons’ points of awe and wonder.
In later years I will look back, far across other universes,
to specific moments in this time I call Now. From these distant
points my chest will swell in reflex, my heart sore and my head
fill with the warm and sad music I love on this remote beach.
Times and places will merge. I will search my fading memory for
the object most precious and have no trouble locating hugs.
They occupy a secret, special place.
Today will be an excellent day. Today I have already spent a
few moments on a quiet beach at sunrise where my whole existence
has been justified and made worthwhile by my quiet, snuggling
sons, sleepily watching the sun rise over the volcano, one on
each of my knees.