Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Seaside Skies

Seaside memories exist more in the recent than the distant; camping out in  a friends caravan with an attached tent, far enough away from roads and places for the night to wrap you in that magic quilt pierced by a myriad lights.
The first night, so clear. Even though they slept: I woke the older 2, it was past 1 in the morning, and the peace was as enveloping as the sky. I lifted the younger onto my lap where I sat on the edge of the camp bed. He took my hand and dragged it across his shoulder as he pushed his head into my chest, eyes not quite open enough to see the lights sky, until I tried to point out a constellation to him and his older brother, who sat in the Kelly coloured canvas chair with the tubular silver skeleton, staring intently into the cloudless purple.


Credit: Starry Night















‘Dad?’
‘Yes bud’.  
“Why are there so many more stars in the seaside sky, than where we live?”
“There isn't darling it’s the same sky, you know that?”
“I've looked before Dad and there is definitely more stars here than I’ve seen before!”
“Well I know what you mean son.”
“See that group of stars just there? That’s called ‘The Plough’, if you follow the dots with your finger you can see the shape form”.
I smothered his hand inside mine and drew the shape into the sky lifting his index finger with mine, moving it from star to star, his eyes wide open now as he painted the sky with his mind. 
“Which one is ‘Mars’ dad?”
 “I think it’s that one there” I said as I went to address the void, but before I could move my finger he bolted up in my lap,
“There... Dad!  Look! That one!  There! It’s there! It’s that pink one there! I can see it! I found it!

“I think you’re probably right son” I said as he sank back onto my chest, pulled the sleeping bag over himself and pressed his head back into my chest. “You've discovered Mars.”