The wind whistles around the entrance to the cave
And a dull day brings rain, beating against the rocks
And swishing inwards, pock-marking the sandy entrance.
The swell rises and the spray adds to the dampness
Out there are monsters of the deep, curling cunning tentacles
Around the unsuspecting prey.
Out there are the sharks, patrolling the shoreline for a tasty meal
Homing in on splashing and signs of distress.
Out there are the jellyfish, floating like ghosts
Just beneath the surface, tentacles ready.
But also ….
There are sea-lions clapping their flippers
Lying as though sunbathing, even in a squall,
Resting at ease in the undulations of the waves.
There are sea-singing whales, splashing in the ocean
Blowing great fountains and spurts high into the air
Where they play.
And there are the dolphins, racing and leaping and
Laughing in the surf which beats the shore.
In here it is warmer.
In here is protected from the elements
In here is washed up detritus
Excrement of seagulls and skeletons of bats.
I can see from my cavity in the rock wall
All manner of life: I can observe others living.
Maybe if the sun shines, I should emerge
And risk dipping my foot in the ocean of life
Maybe I should take a short swim
And see what life brings.
This is a symbolic poem as well as a description of what it is like to be in a dry cave above the swelling ocean. We all have choices in our lives. Some find a safe hide away, ‘a cavity in the rock face of life’ if you will, from which they are frightened to emerge. It seems safe but is impoverished in what it offers as an experience of life. Out there, there is fear no doubt, but there is also laughter, joy and beauty. We cannot, in my opinion, live life to the full without a little risk taking and sampling other things. I believe we should get out there and enjoy and marvel at the good in the world, rather than live in fear and experience nothing.
Words and photos copyright Englepip©