Jones Beach State Park, story by Caroline Bock (BEACH AND POOL MEMORIES Poetry and Prose Series)

Silver Birch Press

jones-beachJones Beach State Park
by Caroline Bock

Pop always approached the ocean gingerly, patting down his freckled arms with handfuls of briny, blue-grey water, letting the cold seep in, his broad back muscled tough like a turtle’s shell. He always wore green bathing trunks striped with palm trees down to his hairy knees. He wasn’t by nature a cautious man. In fact, that day, the hottest of summer by far, he drove us, his four kids between the ages of three and eight to Jones Beach, and let us loose with only a warning to stay clear of stinging jellyfish, deadly undertows, and killer sharks. “If you’re afraid, stay on the sand,” he said, abandoning his ablutions, and diving under a seawall of a wave. We couldn’t figure out what he wanted us to do, follow him, or not? The tide streamed through our toes, threatening to pull us in…

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