The Beach

22 Jul
It was one hundred yards from the cottage to the beach. First pavement, then crushed gravel, then stepping stones through the cattails and weeds. The beach was empty. She stepped over an orange buoy, her foot sinking into a patch of rotten seaweed. Seashells crunched beneath her feet.

She walked to the very edge of the beach. The tide was out. Weak waves lapped at the toes of her shoes. The sky was far away and bright, the water close and cold and gray-green. She breathed in the scent of the salt, the seaweed, the stench of the gulls that circled overhead.

She threw the ring into the water.

She dropped to her knees and then sat down hard. It was gone, it was under the water and sinking, given up to the sea. She didn’t want it. She wanted it. Oh, she wanted it. She could get it.

She dug her hands into the beach, seashells biting into the flesh of her palms, drawing blood. She held on to the sand and the shells and the seaweed. She held.

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