Slice of Life Tuesday: Beach Thoughts

This post is part of the Weekly Slice of Life challenge from Two Writing Teachers. Check them out!


Last week was the first in a long time that I didn’t post a Tuesday Slice of Life post. I meant to, honest. But I was surrounded by THIS:

Gratuitous “beach feet” pic

And by THIS:

Door County, WI sunset

So really. Who could blame me? I spent whole days sitting right there on the beach doing nothing. And I wanted to think about nothing, but let’s be honest. I can let my poetbrain shift into idle, but I can’t park it completely. Here were some musings from lakeside (really, bayside, but I digress).

Sometimes going to the beach
is a matter of collection:
heart-shaped rocks
sun for February days
sounds and sounds and sounds

and on this day
I collect thoughts

watching the older sister,
waist-deep in the water
clenched hands outstretched
beckoning her brother to play
rock or no rock? just guess!
(I don’t really care)
no! really. rock or no rock? you pick
(shrugs, turns his back, walks away)

and out of sheer commitment to the bit
she opens a fist to no one
and shouts
the left hand? okay!…look at that! you were right!

then that same sister
in full view
of brother
and parent
kicks over the brother’s rock pile
with an oops
and a laugh
and a smile
and in the same motion
bends to pick up his flip-flops
and bring them over
for him
in what I can only describe
as the world’s most
most perfect demonstration
of what it’s like
to have a sibling


Just for you: 30 seconds of sounds and sounds and sounds

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20 Responses to “Slice of Life Tuesday: Beach Thoughts”

  1. britt Says:

    Oh my, oh my. This is totally dreamy. I am envious of your trip! I’ve never considered the concept “matter of collection” and I am so intrigued to play with this line in my notebook later. Happy start to summer! 🙂

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thanks, Britt. Funny you should mention – I paused at that line and toyed with whether I should use that word or a different one. Glad the one I picked resonated with you! #writerlife

  2. margaretsmn Says:

    Summer shores should be places of rest and sibling antics.

  3. arjeha Says:

    Can’t blame you for not posting last week. Being surrounded by all this you needed to be fully immersed and collect thoughts and memories to store for this post and for future ones as well. It seems that even though our bodies might be on vacation our minds are always working.

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Yes! Yes, they are. I can’t turn off my writer brain OR my teacher brain, no matter how hard I try…

  4. Maureen Young Ingram Says:

    Oh, my, thank you for the ocean sounds. I love this –
    “and on this day
    I collect thoughts”
    What more should one expect, after the teaching year that you (and all teachers) have just survived.
    Enjoy!

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed (and could watch!) the video. And yes…after a year like this one, there are a LOT of thoughts to collect.

  5. Debbie Lynn Says:

    I did not post last week for the same reason. Thank you for the video. I enjoyed the tranquil waves rolling ashore, reminding me of my own beach trip. 🙂

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thank you! It’s a video that I think I may find myself watching from time to time when I need a moment to breathe.

  6. edifiedlistener Says:

    Yay! Shout out for recovery; for collecting and recollecting; for doing nothing but nothing and watching time pass at your feet and overhead and under your rib cage. Welcome to the well deserved break! I loved the sounds and the peace of the bay!
    Now maybe I can motivate myself to seek a refuge of similar release.

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thank you for this beautiful comment. “Collecting and recollecting” – there’s a poem there too, I think. And yes. Watching and feeling the time pass within my body and around it – that is a luxury I am more than grateful for.

  7. Ramona Says:

    What a blessing to bask in your 30 second sound byte of the water. It’s so relaxing and meditative and soul soothing. Thanks for sharing!

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed it. I actually recorded about a half hour of the waves in my “voice memo” so that I could play it for myself when I needed it…

  8. vivian chen Says:

    Absolutely gorgeous–the setting and the poem!

  9. Fran Haley Says:

    I don’t write a lot when I go to the beach, either – but like you, my poetbrain won’t idle for long – it wants to preserve everything. “Thought collectors” – indeed. That is what writers are. This scene with the children here – such meaning and truth in it. We can’t even gauge it all, until we begin to write it… and YEA for you, having downtime! I am SO SO SO ready for a beach vacation. I savored this teaser ❤

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Aw, thanks! And yes – BIG old yay for having downtime. I’m spending this summer learning how to take it without guilt or remorse. We’ll see how that goes!

  10. Shaista Says:

    W.O.W.
    Just WOW! Oh, to be able to enjoy good sunny weather on a beach, safe and thinking of nothing! Good, enjoy yourself!

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