Wednesday, May 21, 2014

To Glide Gently Into the Waves

Flying above 30,000 feet over the Gulf of Mexico yesterday, I spied a line of debris, perhaps a mile wide, stretching to the horizon. It was sandwiched between two ocean currents that skewed in different directions.
Below me, multicolored dots and splinters of wood heaved gently in the swell. How big were they? Big enough to see from 30,000 feet.
How far had all that debris travelled? Was it born from a single hurricane, or did it accumulate gradually, one dropped Dasani bottle at a time?
What creatures called that place home and thrived in its shadows? And how many were entombed there, tangled and bloated?
If my plane fell from the sky and I were to glide gently down and splash into the water, could I build a raft from garbage and float safely to shore?
Or would I be smashed in the churning debris and eaten by sharks before I could climb aboard?
These are the things I think about.