Day Two: Joshua C. Forrest // The Ocean

April 04, 2018

Once, I was afraid of the ocean…
…and I did not understand why.

I began to think.
What made the ocean
“the ocean”?

There were, of course,
blues and greens and sparks on the water
where the light touched the surface
and pierced into the life below.

There were schools of fish, always moving,
Always together, always dancing.
Shelves and shallows, teeming and swarming
with dark and brilliant things.

Vast space, empty and full,
With endless creatures, known and not,
shifting and drifting, forever drinking
the endless ocean waters.

And deeper, deeper, into the trenches,
lost in darkness, undiscovered
flows of lava, incandescent,
chilled to darkness;
never seen

And there were fissures, effervescent,
Singing songs from deep below.
Their wonderous notes drift on and up,
But we’ll never hear the words.

I thought…
and thought...

I really didn’t seem to be afraid
of anything
that made the ocean
the ocean”.

But here I was,
sick when standing next to it,
in tears when I stepped into it,
and terrified at the thought of going near it

“Perhaps I should look at this differently”
I thought.
“What am I afraid of?”

So I thought.
And asked.
And felt.

Am afraid…
Of floating through space without air.
Of the sky, when I can’t see what lies beyond.
Of a mountain so steep I would slip, and fall, and crash.
Of a canyon so deep while I stand on its ledge.

Am afraid…
Of the thought that there may be a God.
Of the emotion that I cannot withhold.
Of the hands that grab me and won’t let go.
Of the words that stab me, the ones
that can’t be withdrawn.

Am afraid…

Of the deep.
The great.
The things by which I stand
that make me feel so, so small.
Of the things that make me feel
like I have so, so little control.

Even now, standing by the waters,
Unable to see past the horizon,
Unable to see more than a few feet below,

am afraid…
of the ocean.

Joshua C. Forrest is an American composer and creative blogger. His primary goals in writing are to illuminate the truth and to encourage people to consider weightier matters of depth and meaning.

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  1. This is so beautiful! And so relatable. I love this one! <3

  2. THIS WAS AWESOME!!!! I love the ocean, and I find that I relate to every inch of the opposite of this. I love the ocean for its depth (this reminds me of a line in the Simarillion).

  3. wow - such a vivid and deep poem. I actually love the ocean - it's vastness never ceases to amaze me. The only thing I'm afraid of are sharks and jellyfish, since they can hurt. And if salt water gets in my eyes...that hurts too.




  5. Wow, I usually prefer poetry to rhyme and such, but this is just so captivating. And I half relate... for while the ocean is fascinating, actually stepping into that great unknown is... terrifying.

  6. Awesome poem!:) I almost feel like it has a connection with the poem Mermaid...

  7. Wow. Just wow. This was so beautiful, and it made me really think about my fears and why I'm afraid of them. So captivating and mysterious, just absolutely lovely and deep...Like the ocean.

    Micaiah @ Notebooks and Novels

  8. Beautiful words that is written as a poem. Thanks for sharing your talent dear.

  9. I love the ocean. And your poem s very good. Keep it up!


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