Friday 15 January 2016

The Light

Nothing compares.

Nothing better: than diving into the light.

Lift your feet from the soft ground and drive your head through the cool and bubbling wake. The sensation is complete at any time, on any day, but today is special. The waves are breaking rhythmically. There is a pattern to their arrival. A music of calm and activity, like notes and rests, verse and chorus; the ocean subduing your senses, lulling you to believe it might be tamed.   

Lift your feet from the ground, jump and break the water, your eyes closed, then open. How can the sensation be so embracing, yet gentle; strong, yet soothing? It is a visceral reminder of the surreal properties of water, of the unique comfort of salt and sea. But today I am surprised. Opening my eyes underwater is not as I expect. The light is mesmerizing.  An expected turbulence of froth and bubble does not obstruct my view. Instead, rays of light pierce from sky to sand. The water is a bright conductor, light shining brighter than I’ve ever seen it. I cannot look away. I forget to breathe.  The rays above, before, and around me, are distinct; as you see them after rain sometimes when an audacious sun forces its way through cloud determined to reach land, to warm the earth which has been washed clean by unrelenting storms. This light also emanates a united glow. I am, literally, if not originally, bathed in light. I am a mermaid; a sailor and survivor in ancient water.

The water is still because I have timed my dive perfectly to miss the rush overhead. The depth is a mere two metres, from shallow ocean floor to surface, to the source of this celestial light. Is it the light of life? Does the same light call us to death, softening the move between worlds we do not understand? I know anyway that this kind of light is far from mundane. It is not to be captured... only to be pursued... or waited for. It is something to trust in.      

My skin tingles. My senses leap. Forced to breathe, I quickly dive again. The same magic awaits me.  Every individual beam of light is discernible, so too are spots of sand floating through the water like glitter or confetti heralding a celebration. The water is a blue so soft it merges with the golden light, sea and sun as one. Until this moment I had always thought an early Autumn blue the purest of colours, the closest thing to heaven. Now I feel a veil has been raised and I’ve seen and understood a deeper truth, a combination of elements I could never control or prescribe, and therefore all the more intoxicating. I am transfixed. I am in love with this morning, in awe of sunlight on, through, within and seemingly born of water. My skin is cool but my eyes and heart are afire. I am alive in ways I was not just seconds before. I am renewed. And I know it is a gift. I know it is a sensory experience, a discovery, I will fail to describe but inevitably I must try. And I thank God with every cell of my being, the cells which now feel one with the Universe, charged by a force beyond, by the miracle and wonder of Nature.

This was my last swim in the Australian ocean, before boarding a plane to fly to the other side of the world, a place buried deep in a different season as the globe turns inexorably from one day, one month, one year to the next. I’m in a new year and soon I’ll land in a new life – or an old life, rebooted. But with me I’m taking this memory of sea and light, a sense of fresh beginnings and an awe that can only conjure love and good spirits, when only moments before I had felt afraid of the leaving, of again saying goodbye.

I know I’m taking that light with me. And that’s all that matters.



It's nice to finally be back with my blog.  Happy near year everyone!