Long Island

When you’ve lived your whole life in an island community you become used to the  ebb and flow of life as it changes rapidly with the seasons. Tourists come and go, as do the  leaves on the trees and the ice in the sand. You may convince yourself that the ocean is a gift and that to live at its stead is the height of what it means to live, but the landscape is  unforgiving and the pressure of the sea coupled with the wearing of its salt can sting  your wounds.

Long Island is a flat and lonesome place, quick to pull those who were born to its reality  inward as fast as the quicksand of a freshly fallen tide. You can try to etch out a stable existence here, find jobs that don’t depend on the seasons, buy a house far from the water, vote  consistently for your favorite city councilmen, and pray to God that the ocean doesn’t  come to take it all away, but despite your best efforts life will go on.

As unstable as this existence may seem I sometimes wonder if its instability is the islands  saving grace. In my experience waters that stand still for too long become stale and  muddled with the smell of decomposing matter. They usually need a good storm to  clean it up