The Beach

The Beach

We chase the horizon

A little chase-your-dream spirit and a lot of naivety

Tiny feet measure the length and breadth of the beach

Our arms spread out

Not fully, because ma told us to stay close

But enough to feel like we are in the Titanic

Mumma sits on a beach mat with all our beach stuff-

A well experienced guardian (it is her fourth time in life and first on sand)

We trust her to catch us when the waves throw us away

To heal our salt water wounds

To be our own shadow

The guardian against the setting sun and the blazing light.

The beach was always our choice

You can feel the earth throbbing right below your bare feet

We stand facing the distant land of dreams

The stairway to heaven

Or if it pleases, a step down to earthly beings

We wondered in collective amusement (I don’t know how I know this but I do)

If Earth was their choice like beaches were ours?

Early 2010, he took the stairway alone

We kept asking why he wouldn’t even invite us

We could all sip on coconut water together

Get another perspective

Be the unconventional daughters he always wanted us to become

Maybe we already were since death was a ‘stairway’ for us

It was never talked about

The pain, the loss

We played in sand instead,

Burying my youngest sister right up to her neck

(We wouldn’t have stopped at neck if it wasn’t for mumma)

We splashed water from the shallow parts

We wished so hard to grow old only because ageing stretched your limbs out

So we could be two more steps past our sitting-on-the-beach-mat ma’s reach

We laughed when the wind blinded us with our own hair

And squinted when it pushed grains of sand into our eyes

But most importantly we returned

Because the wind never quit on us

A signboard warns us to not leave our belongings unattended

The air obeys by blowing right where we choose to exist

If what every widow looks for is just new love and fresh desire

Then ma was eligible to be on top of her class

If only they knew their answer was indeed ‘Blowin’ in the Wind’

And The Beatles playing cupid,

They would ever take their shoes off and step indoors

If only they knew how suffocating a brick home was for their lover

And the velocity of their love itself,

Maybe they would all just turn to dust.

Dust. The inseparable-from-air dust.

For most part the beach felt like home

Somehow the alliances broken by nature were also forged by it here

As silly as it sounds now and as profound as the meaning of it, it was very simple

The wind was our soulmate.

We trusted ma and she trusted the breeze

The air. The wind. 

To catch us when the waves throw us away

To heal our salt water wounds

To be our own shadow

The guardian against the setting sun and the blazing light.

Ma has turned to dust, truly

The inseparable-from-air dust

the kind visible in light 

circling, moving never stopping 

never dropping, never letting gravity control it

I am nearing my time (as we all are, inevitably).

Maybe death is a stairway or a turning to dust 

or maybe death is the faint line of horizon at the beach 

so let me rot in the sand 

stink a little, sink a little 

till my body turns to dust and my scent imbues the air 

till my body inches an inch closer to ma and pa 

till I become the implausible horizon.


Yushika Baid
Yushika Baid

Yushika writes about her experiences with society and culture, reviews, and captivating poetry.

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