Wednesday, October 6, 2010

shells, sponges, corals

small treasures from faraway places

 long walks along the shore, whether here in maine or in faraway tropical places, open up a world of discovery, a revelation of treasures:
 birds, dolphins, sponges, rocks, driftwood, corals, sea glass, shells... some of these treasures are small enough so they can even be dropped in your pocket and carried home....

i have been scooping up stuff from the seashore for a long time. many of these shells were found in sanibel island, florida. the sponges and coral are from the virgin islands. these are some of my best little treasures....i like to keep them displayed in clear glass bowls around the house.

the shells contain memories, each from a different time away from home. within the smooth spirals are thoughts of happy moments from the past.

i love the different shades of brown and tan and orange. it is interesting that shell color is determined, to a great degree, by the diet of the inhabitant. funny to think of these shells as little homes for sea creatures. what i can hold in my hand was actually, once upon a time, a snuggly mollusk living room, with a small opening at one side to allow the little creature to peek out to search for food.

even more intriguing are the line, spot and zigag designs that make up the exterior decorating schemes of these tough, portable living spaces. amazing that such intricate beauty kept a single life form safe from hungry predators and the rough violence of the surging sea. at last, the shell is abandoned, outgrown, and finds its way onto my palm....

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