Augusta, the beach near Skippy Rock.
A plethora Black Nerita (Nerita atramentosa) a type of Mollusc or sea snail, lining the beach. Tough little shells, but such tender contents, surrendered to the ravages of tide and sun, or predators. Somehow, though they are a common and certainly not a beautiful shell, together en mass they make an eyecatching vista along the shore, one that pleases the eye and draws you to them. Wrecked, faded, empty, but yet varied, together a canvas of colour.
A single shell might go unnoticed, but no one could ignore a multitude. Together their faded, ordinary selves become something else, something to behold. Together there is a strength never achieved alone. What is singularly ordinary with many becomes a spectacle. As we approached this section the shells stood out boldly, and we stood for some time taking it all in.
It’s an analogy that works for me, the idea of being imperfect, a little broken, some faded, all different. That if we apply that to humanity, it works. Individually we are fine, but together we can be more, our colour shows, we are stronger, varied yet one in some ways. We complement each other, enable each other, provoke and challenge, support and carry at times. And we too are sometimes empty, broken, a little faded. Life can be awesome, but it can also be flat at times, and it can be painful too. Community doesn’t have to be clautrophobic, cloying, or homogenous. Like the shells that line the beach we can line each other’s lives with connection, closeness, time, support and more. Together we bring out each other’s colour.
sole black nerita faded, empty, washed up now we shimmer blue ©Paul Cannon