School just let out. I just walked to my car and thought about loading up on cash and gas, which seems so traitorous, and heading south, just driving until I run into the coast line. I feel all the things I felt whenever I got “the call,” the call to come, and to come now, when my grandmother was dying. I am tense, anxious, fearful, but very focused and undistracted about what I must do and in what order of importance. 1. get kids covered. 2. get fuel and cash 3. get going.
I am trying to discern a way, any way, to get to the coastline before death does. I’m thinking of maybe leaving early Sunday, spending the day, driving home late. I want to be there. I want to hold vigil; to walk and weep. I know I am not the closest of kin, maybe I would qualify as a cousin. I am not from there, nor do I summer there, nor do I hope to ever build a home there. But I am a casual camper who cannot imagine life apart from the Gulf as I know it. I have been to many other beaches; dirty, obviously polluted, cloudy water pooling around my feet, and thought, This is no beach. They call this a beach?
I cannot imagine never showing a grand-baby his toes, tingling with fish kisses in the clear shallows. I cannot imagine inedible shell-fish and retrieving only empty crab lines, clear days with no porpoise parades or the graceful swooping flight of the gangly pelican.
Like a child of any age, about to loose a parent or grandparent, who cannot envision life apart from their existence, I struggle to find focus in a life without the gulf.
All throughout the week, a strange thing has occurred with me. Never once has my spirit uttered silently or aloud a word, save, “Lord,” which could in any way be construed as prayer. I have many times been awakened and all but drug ( I like storms) outside by the Spirit to pray and speak to a storm. I have walked about praying without ceasing during recent hurricanes, tornadoes, bombings. I am by no means anti-prayer when it comes to disasters, natural or man-made. But no prayer has escaped my lips toward the circumstances of the spill. There has seemed no ounce of authority resident in me in this regard.
I sense a mourning congealing in me, a deep wail echoing up toward my throat. Today, I feel like one merely awaiting a due death, and I feel a drawing, “Come, come now.”