Seeking Sea Glass at Sunrise Showcases a Certain Slant of Sunlight

With special thanks to Slice of Life for giving writers inspiration, space, and voice

Journeys: Day 12 of 31 (my March theme)

In October 2021, I visited Rockport, Massachusetts, where I stayed in a quaint little VRBO named the Sail Loft of Bearskin Neck, right next door to the leather shop in the heart of town. The New England vibe was strong, and my heart swelled every time I took a walk in the crisp autumn air. The church bells chime the hour and evening hymns from the church steeple blanket this charming town with peace that quiets the soul, a reminder to pause and praise.

The iconic Motif #1 in Rockport Harbor, October 2021

There are three theories explaining how Bearskin Neck got its name. The most commonly held story is that a young bear was caught by the tide and killed in 1700. The second story is that early settlers in the area encountered aggressive bears and would lure the bears onto the neck where they could trap and hunt them. The third story is that Bearskin Neck was named after Ebenezer Babson saw his nephew being attacked by a bear and intervened, luring the bear into the water and killing it with a fishing knife.

A dinghy moored in Rockport Harbor, October 2021

Having lived in coastal Georgia and coastal South Carolina, I know that shell hunting yields greater abundance on an outgoing tide, and the locals confirmed when I’d asked about the best places to find sea glass that Front Beach and Back Beach were the places to go – – but that I’d have to get there early the next morning on the outgoing tide. I made a note to keep an eye out for aggressive bears as I made my way to the beach.

I poured a cup of coffee and headed out before sunrise on a sea glass quest. There were already several seekers with their dogs out at Front Beach, scouring the shore for the bits of opaque glass. A quick walk along this beach told me that I might have better luck at Back Beach, so another few minutes down the way took me to a far rockier beach. The sun was just beginning to peek over the horizon in a vibrant golden color unique to New England beaches, like a pirate’s treasure chest opening in the sky.

I set my coffee cup down. With careful footing on the rocks, I scoured the shore for the tiny bits of glass. While I wanted to take home some sea glass that I had found myself, I realized in those first few minutes that the search was relatively futile. I think I’ll buy myself a bracelet. That’s the only way I’ll be taking home any sea glass, I decided.

Seaglass found in Rockport, MA, October 2021

And then I got lucky. I changed my search zone and found a few tiny pieces that brought heart-stopping excitement. A cobalt piece, a red piece, a light green piece and a white piece resurrected the same thrill of finding the golden Easter egg one year when I was young. I dumped my cold coffee and used my mug as my collection cup.

There’s a certain slant of light, a gift well known to earlybirds

There’s a certain slant of light, a gift known to earlybirds, that is incomparable to any other time of day. The way the rays hit a window or a rocky shore are breathtaking. For sea glass seeking or sunrise, I’m eager to breathe the morning air, to inhale the salt of the sea, to watch the day begin and know each night that I’ve been a good steward of the beauty of this world!

The morning beauty of a certain slant of light – Rockport, MA 2021

Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; let the field exult, and everything in it!

1 Chronicles 16:32

11 Replies to “Seeking Sea Glass at Sunrise Showcases a Certain Slant of Sunlight”

  1. I love the photos and the quiet inherent in searching for sea glass on an empty beach, I long to see the ocean again. I saw an episode of CBS Sunday morning about sea glass recently and learned it’s becoming extinct, so I’m celebrating your found treasure w/ you, Kim.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love sea glass, have a bracelet made of sea glass from one of my favorite places, Ocracoke Island on the Outer Banks of NC (not so very from the place of my beloved old dirt road; in fact, one can catch a ferry between these two locales). I know this certain slant of light and adore it – it is capable of making things new and holy, somehow. Most of all – the steeples and chimes- they restore the soul, do they not?? But all of your listening and seeing and writing does this also – and I am grateful, Kim.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow. This writing carries the imagery and I felt the place, heard the sea, and saw the sea glass, the “slant of light”. The picture of the fishing boat would make for a powerful prompt; the angle seems to leave an opening for characters looking down and ready to occupy the boat. Thank you for sharing such beauty.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love your comparison of finding sea glass to finding the golden Easter egg. The build up to you searching for sea glass was descriptive and I love the pictures you included. I was drawn to your slice because of the title – we were in Maine a few years ago and I loved searching for sea glass at the beach.

    Liked by 1 person

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