23 February 2011

From an Ocean's Song

Living on a tiny sandbar in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, you quickly realize that you belong more to the Atlantic Ocean, than you belong to the mainland.  Going out and walking on the sand can be one of the most spiritual experiences.  No matter how long the day, or how bad the experiences, the ocean has the most incredible ability to wash away all the sorrow.  She doesn't fix your problems, she doesn't tell you the answers, she just sings her strange melody and calms the very essence of your being.

I know I can't put how the ocean sounds to me through a painting, but I wanted to try.  Even when the sky is without a moon, the stars shine bright enough for you to find your way without needing to carry an artificial light with you.  In the off season of the Outer Banks, the houses along the shore remain dark.  We have very few street lights when you get towards the end of Hatteras Island.  Most, if not all, of the shops are closed after 8:00 or 9:00.  There are very few things to take away from the beauty of the stars that shine bright enough to highlight the crests of the waves.

And when the moon is full, it creates an almost surreal feeling.  While the beach is full of people during the summer, it's still much quieter as the night creeps further on.  There's an occasional fisherman, or young couple cuddling by the fire, but even they seem to sense the change in the ocean's temperament.

The moonlight is enough for you to find large shells and spot crabs easily.  It casts a silver edging to the waves; they look more like mercury than water.  And the last edges of sunlight cast the red and purple hues across the horizon, there's not much to match it.

I once had a whole series of these, though, not smart enough to take more photos when I had the chance.  One of each phase of the moon, as well as a blood moon...which is incredible over the ocean I might add.

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