by Renee Garcia-Brown
For my cousin Bruce Morgan, 1957-2017
I dreamed I saw the ocean again
And remembering the dream now, I’m crying.
On my birthday I dreamed I was home, homeland, ocean the birthplace of life
Homeland the birthplace of me
3 AM near the sea.
In the dream I walked between tall buildings until I stepped out beyond them and from a cliff
Saw the ocean, translucent blue-green water glimmering under the sun. I descended a steep trail onto a rocky beach and
Upon a shore of great sea-tumbled stones stood Bruce, shining golden with long blond hair flowing in the breeze, young, muscular and Norse-god handsome pointing out to the far sea.
“I, here” he said, perfect in his radiant sun-kissed eternity.
My eyes followed the line of his direction to the infinite horizon and encompassing the full scope of the ocean, its vastness and the curvature of the earth so overpowering I stepped back.
I never feared the ocean before. I grew up with it.
But after nearly four decades away,
Seeing something bigger than anything else on our planet, covering far more of the world than land or people or their small technologies
Can strike a kind of awed unease and respect,
A melancholy longing… homeland, sea… golden beyond infinity…
I breathed, knowing a feeling that can only be called ‘I, here.’