Wiry Seaweed This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

January 19, 2018

When walking through the shallow, rocky water it appeared peaceful at first. In the summer the breeze was cool on my skin which had felt only an intense swelter for months. Nearly every time the light appeared before my eyes it felt as if the sun was scorching the fragile skin that I embodied. Grains of dirt and glass sat motionless in the reflective mirror like depths of the ocean floor. The tiny tide pool was empty and devoid of any signs of life, yet when I stepped into the water it seemed less obsolete as if there was another universe beneath the almost completely sunken holes filled with fragrant ocean water.
As I walked further out into the vibrant orange skyline that loomed above me, I was enchanted by the graceful birds flying in the air smoothly, effortlessly. Their wings expanded and fluttered off like butterflies into the distance until I could no longer see or even envision them, although I could still hear the elegant flapping of their thin elongated wings. The water swished with the stirrings of its invisible inhabitants, which I couldn’t see but could feel a presence waiting, lurking. I dug my toes deeper into the coarse sand that scratched at me. The sand persisted on my journey outward into the miniscule waves.
At the surface of the bubbling water floated the wiry deep emerald green seaweed. It was resting in the shallow rifts of the sand just below the ocean’s edge, it sent me into a frenzy of panic as it curled and wrapped around my ankles. It felt as if I was being dragged into the somber current where air would escape me, and time was no longer relevant. My eyes darted feverishly looking every which way for even an ounce of the prickly and wiry greenery making sure it did not creep up on me once again, but it’s as if it just disappeared. Yet even after deducing there wasn’t any nearby I was weary of the harmless algae.  Evening was in its infancy and the sun’s rays was slowly fading behind the puffy clouds. I turned around not realizing how far away the shore was, I didn’t understand how I could have made my way out this far without noticing, I strolled on until soon I was swimming.
As the sun had truly started to set I made the conscious decision to swim back instead of aimlessly going through the ocean. The green water had a slight tinge of blue to it but the color was not what enamored me it was the reflective glass like finish which was continually put on display. The tide was starting to push forward now and had a new fierceness to it. I began to push forward moving in the direction that the waves were taking me. They had begun to lead me now. They were leading me astray, off the path which I knew, the once pathetic waves were starting to become bigger and they refused to stop growing. My feet had glided over the sand numerous times but something had changed, something unsettling and familiar had come back to revisit me. Panic built up within me I could feel my chest tighten and it seemed as if I couldn’t breathe. The tangled, wiry mess was right underneath me. I refused to put my feet down, so I swam for as long as I could until my arms were weak and could no longer carry on. Finally, I had been defeated I had to put my feet down. Reluctantly I lowered my foot down while my body stayed afloat. I was nearing the shore and my hope had been restored until I felt prickling at my feet and knew that the beautiful shells underneath me were hermit crabs pinching me. I emerged from the water shivering walked through sharp rocks, tall weeds with yellow flowers, and back onto the rough asphalt from which I came.

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