Out to Sea
My childhood took place 30 miles out to sea. It is strange to realize now, after losing the cocoon of childhood na/Ovete, that the idea of being surrounded by water is foreign to most. Living on an island is an exotic dream to many, yet it is the only life I have known. Nantucket is more than a sand bank, more than a tourist hot spot, more than an historical land mine.
My home is a place of beauty, calm or savage as the wind and ocean wills it. It is the smell of salt and the feel of brine on my skin, the jarring travel over cobblestones and the bitter sweetness of cranberries. To live here is to know the delicious shock of cold when diving into the sea on the first day of spring, opening my eyes into a world I had missed throughout the winter months.
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I don’t think I could be the person I am today without the quiet beauty of this island. Its potent summers and savage hurricane seasons, the rarity of snowfall that turns the Grey Lady into a world of shadows and frozen light, the beauty of the autumn leaves on Main Street; they have all shaped my life in so many ways. I took the passion from the storm, the drive from the wind, the unpredictability from the sea. I took the calm from the mist and the peace from the glimmering grey days after a downpour, for times when I felt like my world was crashing around me. My whole life, I have credited who I am with my rearing on Nantucket. All I want now is to express my gratitude and describe my love for this place as eloquently as its seasons spoke to me, soothed me, inspired me.
The feeling of being connected to something great, of having been influenced by something unique, makes me realize there are things I can share with this world that will make a difference. I want to create my own worlds with words. I want to write things that bring people to their knees. I want to shake the foundations of literature, fill people with wonder, and help us all appreciate the subtle beauty found in the smallest of things: dew on a spider’s web; refracted light in a drop of rain; the sharp sound when ice first forms, cracking and bursting into a still life. Nantucket has given me an appreciation for the world. Now, I want to take that appreciation and magnify it in my writing, rebounding it into the lives of others so it is felt a thousand times over in the hearts of humanity.