Tuesday, August 10, 2010


so close to the water's edge
the wind
wraps sand
into little dunes
around their ridged forms

a grain of sand
entirely extraordinary and entirely improbable

they are each
(like snowflakes when i think about it)
and comprised of the colours
in the shell
or rock
or bone
from which they were birthed

in this way
they're so like people


Linda Sue said...

Love where you go and where you are going...you are just like people...I have never seen a close up of a grain of sand but I would think it might look like- a people. Lovely post, you never disappoint.

Jenny Stevning said...

This is LOVELY! I have a strong memory of that as a teenager - laying on my towel and marveling at some grains stuck to my finger - each so different, so time, so perfect.

jinksy said...

I'm glad we are all grains of sand on the enormous Blogland beach!

NanU said...

beautiful, steven.
i wonder sometimes if we really know that snowflakes are all different. nobody ever checked them all...!

Rachel Fenton said...

That just made me smile my head off.

Liza said...

I love Rachel Fenton's comment.
I loved sand before, but had never thought about it in this way. The link you provided captivated me.
Thank you for this post Steven.
It is marvelous!

Elisabeth said...

Grains of sand, shells and blogs, wonderful, each and everyone of us. Thanks, Steven.

steven said...

linda sue i took these photographs a couple of weeks ago - left the shells where they were. 'cause that's where they belong. just like people. steven

steven said...

jenny the closeups of sand are amazing. it really drives home their uniqueness and their beauty. it's so easy to overlook both when you see an entire beach. just like people. steven

steven said...

jinksy so am i! steven

steven said...

nanu - that's a fair call! maybe there've been twins or triplicates or entire families. or it became cool to look a certain way for a while so a whole pile of snowflakes decided to look like each other! just like people. steven

steven said...

hey rachel - now why's that?! steven

steven said...

liza thanks so much - i've been really fortunate to get to see a beach and stand by the ocean. steven

steven said...

elisabeth - it's why i encourage my own children and the children i teach to be who they are. i tell them "you're the only chance this universe has at who you are so be who you are." steven

The Weaver of Grass said...

You are publishing some very profound posts at the moment, steven.

Tabor said...

I stopped by here because I visited Barry (once again as I often do) and found your link. I love these photos but they really touched a nerve. I remember being 22 and on my way (all alone) to grad school in Hawaii and spending my first free day on that lovely beach at Hanama Bay and I saw the sand on the beach was lots of little odd shapes like snowflakes. (I later learned these were diatoms and immature shells, etc.) But at the time it was a whole new fairy world.

Friko said...

looking into a grain of sand . . . .
and seeing humanity; now there's an unusual take.

The pictures are very interesting, you certainly have an eye; you also know how to follow it. Very good indeed.

steven said...

hello weaver - well i don't feel especially profound to be honest but sometimes thoughts can trigger deeper thoughts. steven

steven said...

hello tabor. thanks for dropping by. your story is really cool. how brave you were to travel such a distance. then to be open to seeing the little worlds of a beach and to marvel at it! have a peaceful day. steven

steven said...

thanks very much friko. it's a thread i'm following to do with uniquencess and how easy it is to discard or tuck away our uniqueness so as to garner some degree of acceptability. perhaps it's attached to my experience of having two teenagers who are very much themselevss but torn by their commitments to pop culture and friendships. steven

Reya Mellicker said...

The sand here on the east coast is so fine and colorless. On the west coast (at least in Northern California) it is very colorful - and BIG - almost like little pebbles as opposed to sand.

I love river rocks, too. Sand in the making. Water is so powerful. Wow.

steven said...

reya the sand on prince edward island on the beaches we visited is predominantly red. i've seen photos of blond beaches but we didn't visit them. i love what water can do and i've got a post coming up that shows just that - two in fact! steven

Noelle Renee said...

To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour.
William Blake/Auguries of Innocence.
Beautiful photos of shells Steven and a lovely comparison between them and people. I love the blue one especially.