Something about the Beach Inspires me

Posted on August 5, 2009


Something about the beach inspires and uplifts me. And here in Lynn, we have a piece of it.

All languages are spoken at the beach. To my ear, there seems to be a disproportionate amount of Slavic languages. These speakers are older people mostly, sitting in groups on the promenade benches, conversing. Spanish and English can also be heard, and many more languages that I am unaware of. Laughter means the same thing in all of them.

All the cultures of Lynn converge at the beach. Middle Eastern, African, Asian, European and Hispanic are all represented.

On this humid hazy night, the full moon appears over a bank of thick clouds, obscured by the haze. It starts out with an orange cast but as it get higher turns yellow white. Moonbeams reflect off the ocean coming toward me in a ever-widening swath. They follow me as I walk along, causing me to think that if I could see the moon from all vantage points at once the entire ocean would be illuminated.

In my walk back and forth along the waterfront I see a lot of the same people twice, coming and going. When I sit on a bench in Red Rock Park, I see some of these people a second time. One woman talks on her cell phone; I overhear her describe a scene from The Day the Earth Stood Still with Michael Rennie. She walks back and forth talking, leaning against the railing. I see her yet again on the other side of LynnShore Drive when I return to my car. Groups of children run in the dusk like ghosts, chasing each other, kicking a ball.

Down on the beach in the surf, there are plovers skittering, darting like schools of nervous fish in an aquarium. It is so dark, I see only the white underside of their bellies, yet if one looks close enough, you can see their white belly reflection in the glistening moonlit sand.