While on Vacation


It was sunrise, I was on vacation, walking in the morning stillness when I felt my toes bump against something in the sand.

I looked down to see a broken bundle of feathers that had been tossed to the shore by the waves and  caught a glimpse of the black, beaded eyes of a young seabird looking back at me.

Before the next wave could take her, I gently scooped her up and carried her out of the sun.

Together we sat. Her breath was strained, her battle with the ocean had taken its toll. I watched her struggle to breathe. My heart ached for her brokenness.

As we sat together wrapped in a blanket of a silence, I felt her settle into my hands.

Time passed as I drifted into the quiet we were sharing, feeling the sacredness of being so tenderly close to a wild creature.

Finally, she stirred. Her wings flew open. There was a gasp and then she was gone.

Eventually, we returned to the ocean. My emotions were raw.

I offered her back to the waves along with my tears and flower petals.

As I stood in the scorching sun, I realized how greatly I had been touched in our short time together.

In her death, she was my teacher. Reminding me of how precious it is to find our own wildness and how we can learn about freedom from the wind and the sky.

And in every moment, we can experience the beauty of our world in our breath.


Sandy Dowpresence, vacation