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We walked north on the beach until we could go no further.

The north end of the beach in front of the hotel ends with an outcropping of rocks that protrude into the ocean for a hundred yards. Two hundred yards? I don't know. My senses seem to have dwindled over the years or are lost entirely at times.

We climbed up the highest rock and sat, talking about the time we braved the waves and rocks closer to the shore to get to another private beach farther north. This time there was a sign saying not to attempt such a crossing.

Looking down from our perch it occurred to me that we could just jump off the cliff into the sea and swim to the private beach. Probably would be easier.

Eleanor knew I was thinking about it. She pointed out a big rock just below the surface. Hmm. Not there. A little farther out. The cliff is a little lower. Hmm. Water looks dark and deep. Look, we could dive straight out, not down, we don't want to hit any rocks. Then we go around that bed of kelp and straight to the shore.

Will you follow me if I go?

Yes dad.

Huh. OK. Well, it was high but not like the cliffs of Alcapulco or anything. I decided to go for it. I grabbed my shades in my hands so I wouldn't lose them, and dove.


The water felt so good.  Eleanor quickly followed me, laughing and hurling herself with abandon into the great sea.

Swimming to the shore I was seized by an urge to cough, and was surprised that I coughed out a little blood, something I have never done before. I told Eleanor I had bit my tongue, because she noticed.

I googled the possible reasons this might have happened when we got back to the hotel. Perhaps high blood pressure, too much advil, ulcer, who knows…I'll see a doctor Tuesday. I don't think it is serious, so don't worry.

Later that evening we went to the fire pit in front of the hotel and made s'mores. I layed on the grass, looked up at the stars and the full moon, and listened to the waves while Eleanor chased this little dog around and around and around.

I felt like Mimi in La Boheme. I felt like Satine in Moulin Rouge.

I thought of all the lives I had touched. How I was nearer to the last chapter of my book than the first.

I can still see the little pools of blood dissipating into the ocean, I can still hear the laughter of my daughter, and see her strong, young legs effortlessly churning as we swam together to places few others have gone.

the cliff by willheim

/ ©2012-2015 willheim
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BeastialMoon Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2012
I swear, these posts belong in a memoir or something. Incredibly deep - and a little depressing.
You said not to worry, so I'm going to (try) not to.
statoose Featured By Owner Sep 9, 2012   Digital Artist
Your jounral entries have quickly become my favorite to read of all the people I follow. Very beautiful. :)
Iron-Chef-OR Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2012
This is hauntingly beautiful! I can only hope it more artistic than autobiographical. :huggle:
willheim Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2012  Professional Artist
Frankly, it was worse than I let on, and art is life, so not much difference between one crossing into another.
thechosenone12 Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
First thing's first, I hope you get better, man. Coughing up blood isn't that serious, but I would get it checked out just in case.

Also, have you thought about being an author? I felt like I could see you and your daughter having fun at the cove. People do have multiple talents, and you're proof of that theory. Take care, bro, fill us in after your doctor visit. I think I speak for everyone when I say we don't want anything to happen to you.
NurioMarayana Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
For some reason, it gets harder and harder to make up the words for me to write a comment. Mostly because most of what I want to say has already been said and I don't want to sound like a broken record or a copy cat...
Nonetheless... Your writing always has this quality that captivates me, as many others. This journal entry is no exception. There's quite some symbolism and hidden themes in the writing that makes one think. And due to the natural flow of the words, I could almost feel myself diving in the water.
Since you said I shouldn't worry about your coughing up blood, I won't. I trust that you know your body best and know that everything is alright.
Tearahk Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Make certain to read each page slowly and carefully. You
don't want to miss anything important. And remember, reading is fun. ^_^
dog0food Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012
"How I was nearer to the last chapter of my book than the first."

Read slowly, please. Get as much out of each page as you can. Some books you can't read twice.
anzul Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Student General Artist
...a moment to realize what life means?
OtakuSquirrel Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
I've had both sinus issues and a stomach ulcer before-- both of which have caused me to "cough up blood"; it can be scary when you don't know what's going on... I really hope that's all it is. Anyway, stress is the enemy, so don't let it consume you and enjoy your weekend.
bobtehnoob-1337 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Hope you get better soon!
Don't burn yourself out!
Otherwise, have fun!
You are an amazing writer, and this is really cute (other than the blood). It gives me the D'awwwws.
FiMvisible Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012
Take care, Will. :)
Cerberus370 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012
I'm worried about you too.
BWOSandman Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Student Filmographer
Really nice story and a cool experience. Although I am worried now. Coughing up blood definitely isn't normal by any means.
BlackGryph0n Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012
This is a lovely story! It appears you are a writer in more than one sense of the word... However, I find it difficult not to worry... I won't pester you, but please update us when you get back from the doctor?...
Death-By-Grunge Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012
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September 1, 2012


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