Swimming to China


stolen from http://bit.ly/alCdp5

He jumped in the car because he’d always been a sucker for adventure. Even the possibility of adventure was enough to capture his interest. Off to the coast with friends and friends of friends for bonfires and roasted marshmallows and whiskey and the surf at night. To be young and fun and wild, to be the envy of those less adventurous, of those the world passes by on Saturday nights.

He has his addictions both big and small, and he’s slowly coming to grips with all of it. He’s addicted to life and love and wonder, and maybe the bottle too. He knows it’s not healthy, but there’s time for all that when he’s older, right now he’s just getting by, the only way he knows how. He’s addicted to adventure, to possibility; and he refuses to apologize for it. This isn’t the road less traveled; there isn’t any map where he wanders. He’s reckless and thirsty, and rarely recognizes when he’s had enough.

He waited until they had the fire roaring, and he then he drifted down to the water. The Pacific crashed black under stars hidden by clouds, but it didn’t matter, it was romantic all alone. He cursed this sky and this life, and he took a long pull off the bottle. It burns comfortably now. It didn’t always, but he’s deadened his senses, and he now finds comfort in that burn, his old friend, back again. His Catholicism came to play and he talked to his ghosts for a bit; he wondered what they thought of him now. How he must look from above.

He raged poetic all alone but for his ghosts and his whiskey, out in the surf under a starless sky; and he thought of her. He doesn’t think of her often anymore, but she still comes to him on nights like these. He thought about the last time he saw her, how they sat on the beach and watched the sunset. Strangers already, he’d forgotten how to touch her, and the moment passed. He’s never had time for regrets, but that moment sticks with him.

He raised his bottle and drank deep, embracing the burn, embracing the feeling of anything that wasn’t hers. He wondered about swimming to China.


10 responses to “Swimming to China

  1. Your style of writing is so….there. I can feel it, I am there. Keep doing what you’re doing

  2. It’s a sad-ish story, and yet I suddenly want to find myself on a beach at night. Beautiful, Sean. And glad my mom likes it too, ha.

  3. seanmcdonnellbrown

    Thank you for reading and commenting, lovely Walker ladies!

  4. Oh, such melancholy – I love it! And I wouldn’t recommend swimming to China, but I highly encourage anyone to take an adventure there. Travel always puts life in perspective, at least for me.

  5. I have the biggest crush on your writing

  6. You have quite the way with words, mister.

  7. Sean Brown! This is so fucking good. I almost shed a tear, but I’m in that kind of mood. Can I swim to China with you? Can we steal a boat and get the hell off this continent? I’ll bring the liquor, you bring the tunes, we’ll sail to warmer waters. Find some hearts to break on the way.

  8. seanmcdonnellbrown

    Thanks for reading Jamie! Lindsay, I think that sounds like a good plan, I like whiskey, we’ll stop in the American Samoa and see what’s going on en route.

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