A light breeze, cool air rising from the lapping waves below.


A boat drifts imperceptibly somewhere between a pale distant horizon and the dark rifts of a gently changing tide.


He sits on the sea cliffs edge – feet dangling far above the waters surface, waiting for dusk to fall. Beside him is a box of fireworks. His face is emotionless and serene as he stares out over the rocks on the opposite side of the cove.


It’s strange how it feels the same as it did before. After returning here time and time again, waiting for it to feel the same, and now that it does… It feels strange.


But it has changed. Certain clefts in the rock are larger. Certain things have changed.


He had never cried since. Not once. He didn’t cry when it happened. At the time his brain was just screaming and there was nothing else.


The sea seems the same – as if every wave, every trough and peak, every thrash of foam against the rock, every surge and ebb of the tide, happens in exactly the same order and at exactly the same time as it had before. As if everything else has changed and the sea remains the same, repeating that day over and over.


He places the fireworks around him in fairly even spacings, lights them, and sits with his legs dangling above the sea once more.


As the fireworks go off around him, one by one, they paint the sky brilliant flashes of reds, blues, yellows, and greens, lighting the bay in an eerie glow. His face remains steady, unchanged and serene. He had hoped for a release - imagined a tear trickling down his cheek, convulsive sobs, falling all that way, falling, a flash of white spray against the rocks, and gone.


COLIN LEGGE

© Colin Legge