|by Alexander N. Kalinkin|
CHILDREN OF THE OCEANPart I
A little child was sitting on the loud ocean shore, looking curiously at his reflection in the waters....He wanted the waves to stop for a moment so that he could really see that restless little stranger there. But the waves kept on roaring, moving up and down, spreading the white foam over the sand and whispering their mysterious tales to him. Sometimes it looked like they were trying to scare him and sometimes their stories were soft and tender. Or maybe it was that little stranger talking? The child began listening harder. Yes, he was right - - the stranger would jump and laugh and the waves would talk joyfully. And he would start talking to the stranger - - and the latter nodded to him, smiling and whispering something witty in his particular ocean manner. And one day when they were talking that way the stranger came out of the abyss. They hugged one another and went running along the sand. Then when the dusk came down they went to the ocean and found there two more strangers to their surprise!
A white-stone castle stood on the ocean shore. Round golden roofs caught the sun light and spilled it around. Small windows looked in wide-eyed astonishment on the boundless ocean... But strangest of all here were the people who lived in the castle. They somewhat resembled each other, yet at the same time were as different as our reflection in the water can sometimes be different from us...
The people lived in peace and friendship. They called one another brothers and sisters and according to ancient legend they had all a long time ago come out from the Ocean.
The Ocean - vast and infinite,
Whether heaven plays with you
Or you play with heaven...
Tender and soft, frantic and heavy...
The ocean gave the inhabitants all that they needed. You had to want something greatly and to wait until time when docile waves brought what you wanted. They were beautiful people. Some of them were musicians, others liked writing poems, yet others - singing and dancing. There were even skilled artists and sculptors, engravers and modellers. They were driven by the desire to create something beautiful and completely lived by this urge.
But then there was a storm. The ocean boiled and cryed. Huge waves battered the cliffs. In such weather the inhabitants of the castle felt uneasy. They sat at home and were sad. They didn't know what the reason for it was, and they just felt pity for the ocean during this time.
When the storm ended the people saw a large fine ship. Many came to see it. Although they lived on the ocean shore they had never sailed there. The ship was empty as if the ship's company had left it, taking away all their belongings. Amazingly enough, it was intact, only beached in the sand.
A long time all looked over this gift of the ocean. At first they thought it was a house, although it is not very cosy. But what a riddle! What was all this stuff for - the masts, a steering-wheel, an anchor? It was not understood...
Suddenly quasi from nowhere a wave swelled up and heaved the ship with the most curious people, who were scrutinizing everything new. They hadn't even understood right away what was happening. And when they understood their own shore had become just a thin line on the horizon. But they trusted in the ocean like it was their mother.
A ship glided among waves
In harmony with the ocean.
It was like the wind,
Scaring schools of fish with its game...
And then the night came and shrouded everything in a soft fog. In the morning, when the fog melted the seafarers saw a big city. The awakening sun played on the steel sides of the sky-scrapers. Large thoughtful vessels rested and a lot of small white boats bustled around...
The ship moored and its curious passengers dispersed, astonished by the new surrounding world.
Nobody paid any attention to them. Everyone was very busy. But soon so many beautiful things began to show up - unusual vivid pictures, nice buildings, clothes, new fine songs... When people saw it they stopped, stood motionless and something answered in their heart of hearts, some vague memories came alive in them and tear-drops appeared on their weary eyes...
P.S. I thank Philip Bell for his warm encouragement and my teacher Roland Beauchamp for his help in the proofreading.
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Copyright © 2002 Alex Kalinkin