What Remains | Teen Ink

What Remains MAG

May 6, 2016
By joannalee_55 BRONZE, Sterling, Massachusetts
joannalee_55 BRONZE, Sterling, Massachusetts
4 articles 0 photos 0 comments

I have existed for a very long time -- longer than the birds, longer than the trees, longer than the girl who sifted me through her fingers and scooped me into a little jar along with a few seashells. I know this girl well. I have held the shape of her footprints in every size they have ever been, always at the times when the sun shone most radiantly upon me. The imprints grew larger each year that she came, remaining for a time until the surging tide swept across my ever-changing surface and swallowed them up forever. Under the gentle caress of her hands I have taken the shape of the castles and mermaids into which she carefully molded me, and I have felt the scraping of the stick she used to etch the looping letters of her name into my grainy surface. The names of two others always accompanied hers in the sand, year after year.

I remember feeling the patter of their three pairs of feet rushing to meet the sea and skipping away again the instant the foamy water touched their toes. I felt the light, carefree touch of their hands as they turned cartwheels over me beneath a brilliant blue sky. One summer evening they sat on my shores and braided their hair together, as the setting sun painted the horizon in glorious streaks of pale pink and gold. They wove strands of their hair into a single multi-colored plait of blonde, red and brown, all one, their jubilant laughter dancing in the salty air so vibrantly it seemed it would never die.

But the warming rays of the sun always vanish beyond the grassy dunes, and the moments we cherish are consumed by the churning, icy waters of time. Before long the unrelenting waves rolled in, obliterating all traces of her and the other girls and the friendship they shared. My shores are constantly sculpted and altered with each passing second, forever at the mercy of the roiling sea.

The following summers, the girl still returned to run her hands through my soft grains and feel the brilliance of the sun on her face. New names appeared next to hers in the sand, and her laughter rang out again above the steady rumble of the sea. Her touch seemed to feel steadier upon me, strengthened by the pain she had endured. It was as if the innocence of her youth had been swept away along with the names of her friends, swallowed up by the frigid ocean tides. Yet some things are so precious to us they remain constant in our hearts. She keeps the laughter and the memories like she keeps me now preserved in the glass jar on her bedroom shelf, unchanging, to cherish always.

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This article has 1 comment.

on May. 10 2016 at 3:55 am
PhilosophicalLinx BRONZE, Upper Marlboro, Maryland
3 articles 0 photos 11 comments

Favorite Quote:
" I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing."

Just beautiful