I took a walk, alone, on a Friday evening,
after a week of being with my three children, every hour of every day.
Alone, by the sea, I walked along the beach,
past couples entwined and groups of friends sharing drinks,
past people walking their dogs and jogging on the sand.
There wasn’t anyone else alone, completely alone. Just me.
The only company I had was my small pocket camera.
The one thing that everyone on that beach did share that evening,
was a mutual appreciation, for the incredible glow of the sky,
as the sun dropped over the Pacific Ocean.
It didn’t seem right to hold all my feelings and thoughts inside my head.
The beauty of the sky and the colours projected on the ocean,
and break waves rolling gently on the sand,
created too intense a feeling to contain within my one body.
It was one of those sunsets that makes a person feel very small.
A sunset that’s better shared.
I leant back, against a sea wall, behind which stood a prestigious property.
It wasn’t like the beaches I’m used to in New Zealand.
It was beautiful, all the same, but there were properties bordering upon its beauty,
encroaching on the natural beauty with their man-made finery.
I didn’t feel like I belonged.
The setting sun seemed to be pulling me out,
with a longing, to beaches thousands of miles away.
I was glad of the wall against my back.
It’s firmness gave me comfort,
though I’d sooner have had the touch of a lovers hand
pressed on the small of my back.
I’d sooner have been the couple out on the water,
sat on their paddle boards, limbs touching,
watching the sunset from their serene vantage point.
There were no others out on the water but them
and a yacht, silently anchored.
My silence was overbearing.
I needed to let out a sigh, a gasp,
some sort of vocal appreciation for what my eyes could see.
I needed the warmth of my lovers hand to hold.
My children’s silhouettes to watch,
dancing against the backdrop of the red sky,
as they dodged the waves.
This was a sunset to share with the people you love.
A sunset that with all its beauty held a tinge of sadness too.
© Sarah Lee, October, 2013