You are walking through a deserted street. You have no idea where you are. You just know that you need to keep walking. There are trees on both sides. They might extend to form the woods or maybe a mighty forest. You do not know. You walk further and the chirping of birds and crickets and croaking of the frogs greet you. You decide to venture into the woods and plunge into the greens towards your right.
The dry, fallen leaves crackle and crunch beneath your feet. You are more aware of the sound of the woods now and the pressing cold. You walk cautiously, ensuring that your feet always meet solid Earth. You never know what lies beneath those layers of leaves and twigs. As you walk deeper into the woods, your ears pick a new sound. You move further and the sound doesn’t stop. It is more like an ongoing music with swishes, splashes & hushes. You mistake it to be the sound of oncoming rains. But after a while you realise that the sound remains where it is. As you move, the woods become thinner, you find yourself moving faster and the hushes becoming louder.
Before you get the first glimpse of the view at the end of the woods, you realize where you are headed. With the next few steps, you feast your eyes on the vastness of the milky white ocean, your ears already well accustomed to the waves crashing over the rocks. With no companion, all you could do is look at the Ocean and you look deep. Into the vastness. You look at the waves that refuse to give up. The water that curls into beautiful waves and crash against the rocks.
What do you feel now?
What do you feel when you look at the Sea?
Happiness? Peace? Excitement? Awe?
For me, it was fear. The sound greeted me first and the sight of the vastness followed. I wondered what would happen if the Sea decided to come forth and never return. Every time the waves crashed, I shuddered at the sound.
I tried closing my eyes and the fear increased manifold. I couldn’t keep them closed for even a minute. I knew that if the Sea was to swallow me, I wouldn’t escape. But I felt safer when my eyes were open. Frailties of the human mind! It sometimes believes with so much fervour that we do not question it the second time. I sat on a bench and watched the waves lick the shore again and again and again.
Amidst my fear, there was this urge to go closer to the waves. I wanted to touch them. Feel the waters. The more I watched the waves curl, the more I felt restless. I began to walk towards the waters. Huge boulders bordered the Sea and though one could climb over them and get down into the Sea, people refrained from doing so. There was a board that forbade anyone from getting into the waters. I walked up to the rocks and stood there, my eyes fixed on the waves. A few minutes ago, I feared the sound and now, I was mesmerised by the magnificence.
I prayed for a huge wave to crash on the rocks before me so that I could feel the waters and yet when I suspected that a wave was bigger than usual, I kept my distance. Oh! I was torn between my fears and the urges.
The Sun had vanished, the skies threatened with heavy, grey clouds hanging from heavens and the waves were getting furious. I stood at that point where the rocks began and watched the show. The Sea was becoming more beautiful as the dusk approached, with each wave more intriguing than the one before. And my urge to walk into the waters were stronger. So much so that, there was a voice egging me on to sit on the boulders.
As the realisation dawned on me, I began to retreat, horrified. My initial fear had been replaced by awe which was now replaced by sheer horror. I realised my fears. It wasn’t the Ocean that I feared. I feared myself. I feared my mind and its power to admire everything beautiful. Its ability to seduce and lure me into temptations and its cunningness to convince me that whatever I was doing was normal.
My fear wasn’t that the Ocean would rise and never retreat. My fear was that I’ll walk into her permanent embrace.
Now, I am in awe of the Ocean and my mind’s prowess!
Linking this to the Daily Post’s prompt ‘Awe’.