By Boudica Gast
I wrote a poem the other day on the occasion of me and my friend sitting hungover like a pair of idiots on the pavement in the rain. Elliott was just in front of us, yet we didn’t get up and find shelter there. We stayed just where we were, cold and wet. What did Elliott have to offer anyway besides the chatter of people whose chatter we really did not want to listen to at that moment? The chilly rain seemed to give us something more rewarding.
I decided that the poem needed some pictures to accompany it, and thought the frigid and blustering Zeeland beach would be best. It was the only place I knew where I could easily find a massive body of cold water to fit the poem’s title. Zo gezegd, zo gedaan, as the Dutch say: one afternoon in November I cycled to Dishoek beach on my own and took these photos.
I sincerely hope you enjoy the pictures and the poem.
I need a drizzle and a sea to scrub me clean
Static lake and running river
All the water in all the world
Against all the noise of all the world
Just a little drop of silence
In all the noise of all the world
The cold water was refreshing
It scraped my skin
It bit my bones
It pulled my skin from my bones
Like a butcher
Like a child on their birthday
The wrapping papers off a gift
To reveal something much more exciting underneath
The cold water washed the dirt away
Last week’s truckload of nonsense
This morning’s thoughts and misconceptions
To the bricks of my body
Concrete wall, and solid stone
Human beings cannot breathe underwater.
Ergo, I did not breathe underwater.
And it made the world stand still
For just as long as I held my breath
And when I emerged
My hands felt cold
My skin was bit and searing
And the world started spinning again.
With yesterday’s grime flushed away
I had the space to bear the spinning
Of the globe
To bear this week’s truckload
Into next week’s waters.
Boudica Mae Gast, Class of 2022, is a Literature major from Voorburg, the Netherlands.
Image Sources: originals