the calm before

It was barely past sunrise, too early for the day to begin her churning. Quiet, still.

The tide was leaving again. In its wake, small pools sparkled in sunlight like stars along the shore from here to eternity.

In one I caught a glimpse of heaven—until a soft rush of waves cast ripples and it disappeared at my feet.

Exhales of water bore channels around islands of sand, where gulls and willets danced in excited morning ceremony.

A cormorant practiced ancient rituals on a rock surrounded by surf, and seemed to feel as blessed as me.

• • •

Photos ©2011 by Jen Payne; Scarborough Beach, Narragansett, Rhode Island.

16 Responses

  1. Your post is a prose poem, and the photos are special.
    I too love the — what? not footprints, not pawprints, clawprints?
    I guess bird prints will have to do, but they are so distinctive they should really have a special word for them.
    (Tracks????????? Not quite right.)

  2. I think that some gulls have gotten a bad rap from some of the ruder members of the family, but they can be a very interesting bird (and good subjects for photography). I enjoy the image of the distant cormorant on the rock at the end

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