Jack, stiff and impatient, endures his limbs being lifted and twisted as sunblock is smeared over every cell of exposed skin.
People have ceased to exist. The waves, grumbling and shooting froth-fringed arcs across the sand, draw, call, are everything. Tugging away as his hat is pulled hard down, jerking him, he runs to the seething water and lets dazzle from the sun hypnotise and soothe. The lazy waves numb his tangled thoughts and magnify emotions.
He wonders what happens to waves after they are spent. They come from a distance beyond comprehension – as far as far can be. It seems impossible that they merely cease to exist.
The dazzle on the blue, blue water; where does each flash go once it’s over?
Jack bends down and draws in the sand, chubby finger rigid. A wave deletes his efforts. He frowns, face scrunched in metaphysical intensity far beyond that which adults believe of children so young.
Sad that he can’t write her name yet, Jack draws a heart which seems even better. Two more waves and it is gone. He draws another and another – an eternal line of obliterated love going where the waves go.
Jack’s not content. He draws little hearts: they’re faster. One for each of the children in their class who miss her as much as he does, even some who don’t but would if they had known her better.
Tears clog or push channels through the sand on his face.
©Gary Bonn, 2020