The sea

Largely, I am a practical person. Or I like to think I am. I like logic, common sense, and using nouse when making decisions. Sometimes I pride myself in it, though I am also inclined to make silly decisions and all my logic then falls down.

But generally, I’m not into touchy feely stuff. That’s not a good thing. I was only saying to my other half, the other day, that I think allowing yourself to feel what you feel is important. Not sweeping it under the neutral rug of ‘I’m fine’, or the masking positivity of ‘but even though that’s rubbish, this is great.’

But that’s a long discussion, as my poor husband found out, and not the point of this post. As I say, I’m not generally into the whole ‘I really feel drawn to this…’ That is apart from this morning. I was sat on a bench, watching the early morning sun beams fracture across the bare bay of a low-tide estuary, seeing lone figures of other dog-walkers silhouetted against the skyline. I was praying about my car – it’s going to cost me a fortune to fix soon – and I was feeling the seeming caress of the sea breeze.

And right there and then I thought, ‘I feel drawn to the sea’. I never thought I would. I have always liked the sea, the holidays spent at Grandad’s on the Kentish coast, building sandcastles in front of his deck-chair hire hut. I’ve loved the West Country since visiting with my parents repeatedly through my teens. But although I have always thought the sea majestic and admired it, I’ve never felt a particular need to be near it.

Then we moved nearer to it, quite unintentionally, and it’s like some previously unknown spirit within me has awoken. I suddenly ‘get’ it. I get why writers consistently draw upon metaphors of the sea in their literary works, why it is a consistent setting, emotive and restless in novels, and why artists will simply never stop painting it. There’s something other-worldly about it. Yet it’s totally part of our world.

It’s boundless, restless, mysterious, deep, secret, hidden, violent, riotous, unsafe, untameable, uncontrollable, beautiful, reflective. It’s other.

I’m supposed to be studying this morning before going to the office. But I felt compelled to write this. It’s not like it means anything, like my life will now take another direction, or you’ll find me near the sea at any opportunity. It’s just, I ‘get’ it.

Published by Philippa Jane Keyworth

Philippa Jane Keyworth, known to her friends as Pip, has been writing since she was twelve in every notebook she could find. Originally trained as a horse-riding instructor, Philippa went on to become a copywriter before beginning a degree in History. A born again Christian, Philippa lives in the south of England with her handsome husband. Philippa has always written stories and believes that, since it is one of her loves and passions, she always will. In her early writing career, she dabbled in a variety of genres, but it was the encouragement of a friend to watch a film adaptation of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice that began her love affair with the British Regency. Since then, she has watched every Regency film and TV series she could get her hands on and become well acquainted with Georgette Heyer's novels which gave her the inspiration to write her own. Both as a reader and a writer, Philippa believes it is important to escape into a world you yourself would want to live in. This is why she writes stories that will draw you into the characters' joys and heartaches in a world apart from our own. Her debut novel, The Widow's Redeemer (Madison Street Publishing, 2012), is a traditional Regency romance bringing to life the romance between a young widow with an indomitable spirit and a wealthy viscount with an unsavory reputation. The novel has been received well by readers and reviewers who have praised the heartfelt story and admirable characters. Her second novel, The Unexpected Earl (Madison Street Publishing, 2014), explores another romance in the Regency era when an impetuous young woman has her life turned upside down by the reappearance of the earl who jilted her six years ago. So, what are you waiting for? Get swept away into another time with characters you will learn to love, and experience the British Regency like never before.

3 thoughts on “The sea

  1. I’ve always lived close enough to the sea to take a bus/train or in my salad days cycle the 12 miles to the coast or 3 miles to the estuary. And I get very very twitchy inland. There’s something primevally attached to those of us in an island nation, I recommend John Masefield’s poetry to you. My ambition is to be a best seller so I can afford to move 12 miles into one of the houses overlooking the sea [good coastal defenses making this now a safe option] preferably a Martello tower, where I can gaze out on a clear day to the sea fort, watch the shipping come in and out of the port and mostly to watch the ever-changing mood of the waves where the colour can change in an instant as a squall runs down the channel or up from the atlantic.

    I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
    And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
    And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
    And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking.
    John Masefield

    1. Hi Sarah, thanks for your comment. So glad you liked the post and understand my affinity with the sea! I agree, there must be something in us because we’re an island nation. I too would love to have a property like the one you described 😉 It’d be so awesome to be able to watch the waves from a room overlooking the sea with a great window looking out onto the expanse and a perfectly positioned writing desk. I’ll look at John Masefield’s poetry as that section you popped in the comment is just lovely! Thanks again for sharing.

  2. Glad you enjoyed the poem’s start! I don’t generally write poems about the sea, because I feel I can never aspire to the evocative nature of Masefield’s poetry. There is something so evocative about ‘It’s a warm wind, the west wind, full of birds’ cries’ and the majesty of the language ‘Quinquireme of Ninevah, from distant Ophir, sailing home to haven in sunny Palestine’ in ‘cargoes’

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