I wanted to tell you a story but my grand ideas were all swallowed up by the ocean, whose voice is much deeper and far more profound. The sea knows more than I will ever know, has covered more ground and sunk lower than I ever will in this lifetime or any other. Do you believe in reincarnation? The thought alone terrifies me so I don’t think about it, try to distract myself with anything else. Imagine having to do this all over again but as someone or something else. No, thank you. If I can manage to create something intimate of this one life I have been so randomly given, that will be enough for me. In the thick of the confusion which has now become the general state of the world at large, we pull on our cold weather gear and walk a frigid deserted beach for miles. No one around, only the thunder of the crashing of the waves as the sun streams down, crunchy collections of broken up seashells under our boots, and an empty fishing shack worn and battered atop a lengthy pier. Wind tearing into our faces, we tighten our lips and do not speak. Crisp white gulls with their wide pointy wings are swooping out over the ocean, which is the heaviest inky velvet dark navy blue I have ever seen it, while the sky is a quiet light sandy blue. As above, not so below. Light and darkness in stark relief. Nature all around and inside of us is eerie, distraught, tumultuous. Somewhere in an ancient city across the globe, people are dying by the hundreds in hospital beds. People are singing lullabies, people are trapped, people are writing love letters and eating fish from small jars. Somewhere in the distance between he and I, my anxiety jitters right beneath the surface of my skin. When he touches me, my body reacts by pulling away. My mind reacts by screaming inaudibly Don’t touch. Maybe I’m colder than I used to be, maybe I am afraid. Maybe the things we try to hold on to only want to get away. I don’t know why I get like this, I don’t know why I live with one foot out the door and the other on my own throat. But I know he stays when times are tough. When times are impossible. When my insides are relentless, dark black velvet waves. He stays and he stays until we ride out the storm.