I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand. - Confucius

The Gentle Waves Wash Up the Beach

1 nomination

Gently they break upon the beach, And over the sand they softly wash; To my feet they barely reach, But over broken rocks they splash. Across the bay so calm I gaze A village I see in sunlight glow; And distant headland through misty haze, With cliffs so dark and rocks below. The gulls now wheel and screech on high, And tiny fish in pools below With sideways crawling crabs I spy; Has life like this been always so? What treasures the broken rocks display? What stories lie within the shale? What life was buried beneath the bay? What world entrapped I now unveil? In seas so warm they lived and died; In sand and mud became interred; And now exposed by falling tide, The shales display their forms preserved. I split the shale - an ammonite! ....... A spiral so perfect, a shape divine; Its golden colour glistening bright, Is this a product of God’s design? I think of wonders seen by me, On hills, in woods, in soil below; In sky above, and ‘neath the sea, But none compares with this I vow. ************ Above I hear the seagulls' cries, I ponder anew at all I’ve seen; So back I lie and close my eyes, The sun’s so warm, my mind serene. Runswick is a coastal village at the north end of Runswick Bay, a few miles north of Whitby in the English county of North Yorkshire. The cliffs are mainly formed of shales laid down as mud in quiet warm seas some 150 million years ago. The seas were clearly very conducive to life as they contain many fossils of ammonites, bivalves (limpets) and belemnites (related to squids and cuttlefish). The cliffs are a great attraction to fossil hunters and geologists. In Dorset, rocks of about the same age have given up many fossiliferous dinosaurs. The golden colour of some fossils is due to their shells being replaced by iron pyrites that glistens like gold in the sunlight. The cliffs are dangerous but fossils are collected from or photographed on the exposed fallen rocks.



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