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  • Writer's pictureMonique Sliedrecht


The new morning brought a pause in the wind, a stillness over the land and sea.

Moonlight streamed through the windows and when I looked out to the north I could see it hanging midway up in the sky, bright and shining, reflecting its silent glory on the few cirrus clouds, and the open vista.

These mornings are magnetic. I cannot just observe the view from a limited pane of glass. I need to get out in this space, to experience the wideness of the sky and the uneven terrain, and breathe in the still clear air. I dressed quickly so as not to miss anything. And once dressed, I made a thermos of coffee and grabbed my camera and stepped out into the new day.

As I walked, the snow moon was slowly descending while the sun was rising. The leftover evening glow mixed with the oranges and pinks of the sunrise created the most glorious environment. It was a sublime performance of the grandest kind.

I went down to the beach - a place I had not visited often enough in the last weeks. I had been too busy or preoccupied, or the wind was too strong. And now I realised what I had been missing.

Seaweed was strewn across the beach, and I picked up the odd bottle cap or piece of plastic that had been washed up with the sea plants. I stuffed them in my pockets. Who knows - one day they might find their way into an art project, I thought.

I continued to walk, stopping every few seconds to observe a flock of lapwings making their erratic flight across my view of the sky until they vanished in the distance, or to look at the new shoots of freshly grown seaweed on the wet rocks, or observe the light accentuating the shape of a cliff-face…. I sat on a patch of almost dry grass at the edge of the sandy beach, and pulled my thermos and cup out of my rucksack. When I unscrewed the cap, steam came out, mixing with the cool air. I held the warm cup to my mouth and took a sip, looking at the seaside morning display unfold in front of me.

Eventually it was time to get up and head back to the house. As I looked back the sunrise reflected off the rivulets in the sand formed by the lowering tide. I took one last photo before trudging back up the path to home. As I did so, I saw the shape of an ‘X’ in the water patterns -- a kiss from the sun, and a gift from nature on this early February morning, to set me on my day.


Starting yesterday and for the next 21 days, I’ll be taking part in a writing challenge where I am writing on the theme of 'seasons', initiated by a new prompt each day. I won't post here every day necessarily, but may include some pieces from this challenge every once in a while. Do subscribe and follow along if you would like to read more. Just click the tab on the top right of this page. X

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