Fall in Love with Seascape

My oldest son by the Mediterranean Sea

“I fall in love with landscapes, seascapes, rivers and lakes the way other people fall in love with humans,” award-winning writer Annie Proulx starts her essay, dedicated to the Ocean. I think, this will be the first time when I share an article, not a book, on Beach Books Blog but you have to read this, if you love sea and ocean as much as I do. Beautiful essay. Here is a fragment, where she describes, how different the seas and oceans are:

“And it was my ocean—clean, rock-edged, barnacled, with its own distinctive odor—when I had a house in Newfoundland and scrambled up on Burnt Cape to watch the whales below or looked out at night to see the lights of what they said were Russian trawlers. Later when I traveled I saw many of the world’s seas and oceans. In the low countries the North Sea was part of the Atlantic that I still associate with sautéed skate. Along the east coast of South America the Atlantic seemed darker, more impersonal. To me the Mediterranean seemed a painted sea, its fire-rimmed human history constantly vibrated with reminders of gods and goddesses. The deeds of long dead people diluted the sea’s own character. The Indian Ocean, fringed with pastel waves, remained more a name than a place. In my twenties on a trip to Japan I met the wrongly-named Pacific, a heartless, stormy bitch that threw a passenger down the stairs and broke his neck, heaving snarls of water as we skirted the Aleutians. From the shores of Japan the Pacific showed classic beauty, but I had already taken against its violent personality. The maps show us the human-named five or seven oceans and dozens of seas and specific waters. The Atlantic remained my true ocean; it was not easy to accept that there is only One Great Ocean embracing all.”

Ocean: An Essay by 2017 PNBA Award Winner, Annie Proulx


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