Yellow Line Flood

You can see the thin hallow hollow moon hanging in the distance. A distant smile, a white light reflection, at the beginning of fasting, at the beginning of another moon cycle. You expect to know nothing? Something. But nature reminds you, with the trees bending in the spring wind, that one branch hovering over the road, waiting to be told when to fall. You’re driving to the beach, and you see it, and we hope that because you have noticed it, it won’t fall on you. You avoid squirrels, unlike some who seem to head for them. You read something about how an animal hit in the middle of the road means the driver aimed for it, the small furry creature, heart beating fast as it risks the street, a thousandth the size of the metal tank it can’t predict. On the center line you saw the bloody bruised body of what was minutes before, a thinking, live creature, with tiny paws, who could run up trees, and laugh with his friends over nuts and who could get around the trunk fastest, and now it was road kill, some bits of blood over its still warm fur and some asshole with a big house and a big car and a big ego decided getting to nowhere, or an appointment – not even with destiny – was more important than slowing down, just a little. It’s ego territory up here, sadly, in the midst of such beauty. When the sky goes red and gold and grey, and the ocean turns a thick blue before going lavender then black, dark with the fish who feel safe for a while in the night, nature knows it’s a shame that these are the people who now live here. A florist warned you a while back, and you wish he hadn’t been mostly right.

But maybe people will learn, and recognize the spirit still and always dwelling in the rock, the wing of the hawk finding air currents overhead, the mice, the birds, the muskrat that is now venturing out because spring is here, and there are things to eat here, and there, snuffling. And the people, they aren’t all bad, like the man who has lived here for 30 years and just lost his partner, the Key West sticker on his truck, and the picture he took of the rainbow over the river that he shows to cold yet warm people who walk by in down vests , who seem up for a talk, or the grey haired woman with a cautious, friendly smile who was usually in the hut that gives access to the beach, but today went to a funeral, the street packed with cars, a local importance, a life honored. She was talking to another mourner, her long grey hair finely brushed and hanging to her back, beautiful hair, thick and all the colors of ice in the dark; they think only young women are allowed to have hair like that. All the colors of ice in the dark; seaweed moving with the current, thick like the ammophila breviligulata that holds the dunes in place.

Nature knows a lot, would like us to know with her. There are some people who brake for squirrels and look at the sunrises, and walk alone into the forest with their telephoto lenses to see the birds closer and a woman who thanks you for keeping your dog on a leash; remember them yet they all go home alone, and the mall might be where they meet or there are places to have hamburgers and beers, and see the people you went to high school with. There’s a museum with the old whaling rowboats, and some arrowheads – remember when books used to mention schoolchildren finding them everywhere. History requires upkeep and do you need the museums – when and because – you have the ocean and the long stretch of beach and the quiet roar of the wind and the waves that hit the sand bar, and the trains that go by when they go, and the bulbs that come up in the spring, and ticks and bugs, and rocks and 10,000 years ago it didn’t look like this but from Monday to Friday, 10,000 years have passed, and you’re never going to explain it, are you.