The ocean is speaking. It says "Come and visit me today. When you were young I'd see you much more often standing on the shore amazed at my imensity. I have many secrets to reveal, if only you'd return to the magical place, where my waters sift the sand and kiss your feet."
Its siren call almost wins me over. But I am very tired. And not so young anymore. Instead I sit and listen to the time as it moves past me, in the slow mechanical monotony of the clock's pendullum, which swings above my head like a damaclean sword.
Tomorrow. Maybe tomorrow. . .
It is cold and the gray windswept sky presses down with the force of my deepest fears. The sand feels cold and sticky as it collects between my numbing toes. My shoes lay somewhere in the tall beach grass that permeates the dunes.
Time seems endless here. I lose track of it while plodding through the pasty sand and the frigid water, that once again has dared to reach my feet. Thinking I heard someone call out to me, I swing around, but no one is within sight. Instead I see a single line of footprints that disappears around a bend in the shore. "Only one set of footprints" like in the poem, except these I know are mine and not God's. I know well by now the prints my feet leave behind. I've spent half my lifespan leaving them in endless circles, or along paths I wish I'd never taken... past others I wish I had.
Shards of shells coughed up from the surf like an infection are gnawing at my feet. These, I think, will be the only secrets given up by this coquettish sea. The momentary silences between the crashing waves give way to the mocking laughter of some gulls. My feet are hurting, one is bleeding, and the wing'ed white beings above just keep laughing from their lofty position in the sky, like a chorus of demon angels announcing the birth of absolutely nothing. Their screeching calls echoing and building, make me dizzy with angst and fury because the ocean reveals nothing to me anymore. My head feels like it will explode from the relentless cackles of the birds, which have now been joined by others.
Hands over my ears, I stand here and try to ignore the chorus, and watch my single path of footprints being erased by the careless tide. It will wipe away every trace of my presence here, as if to say, "Look, you were never here at all."