Moonlight

From a creative writing writing assignment about description.


It was nearly midnight, and the night sky was picturesque. A black to navy gradient was the backdrop for a full moon; the night sky so clear you could almost see every crater. The moon, a glowing yellowy white, loomed large, surrounded by an ethereal glow. Millions of stars were sprinkled behind it, a few large ones but mostly a multitude of little white pin pricks. Every now and then, a twinkle caught her eye. This was an unfamiliar sight from her city life, where the lights never went down, perpetually hiding the beauty of the nighttime sky.

The ocean waves lapped lazily at the shore, a jumble of navy and royal blue that glistened in the night. White foam crested the top of the waves as they approached, spilling onto the sand like a net being cast.

The foam bubbled over the sand and the shells that littered the beach. The shore here was so unlike the beaches at home; the shoreline at home had been picked through by the millions of people that visit every day, all year round. It offered no more surprises. Here, it was much less populated, and the kids didn’t have time to play in the sand and make sand castles and look for shells. They had jobs, they had to eat, to survive.

The gentle sound of the waves hitting the beach sounded almost like a lullaby. She closed her eyes, nestling deeper into her chair, taking in a deep breath of fresh ocean air as a small breeze blew by her face and tickled her nose. The sound of children laughing disturbed her from her peace, and she searched the shoreline for the source of the laughter. She saw a group of kids a ways down the shore, carrying blankets and boxes filled with things they wanted to sell her; things that she didn’t want to buy, but would.

She looked around her, the neighboring houses along the shore so different from home. They were all different colors, bright orange and turquoise and pink. She hated to think it, but they looked shabby and old compared to the beach homes in her native country. She couldn’t help but feel a pang of sadness at the sight, and she wasn’t entirely sure why.

Even though the beauty of the beach and the evening was captivating, it wasn’t the same as the shoreline she had grown up on. It was the same ocean, the same sky, the same moon; but it was still different.

As the kids approached, she pulled some cash out of her purse and tucked it into her pocket. They looked much smaller when they were up close, their eyes wide with anticipation. She smiled at them but they didn’t return the smile, just asked in their native tongue if she wanted to buy anything. She looked over the little packs of gum and simple handmade wooden toys, picking a little bit of everything and buying a big, scratchy blanket. Even though they only asked for a few dollars, she gave them everything she had in her pocket. They finally offered a smile, then thanked her and ran off.

She watched them until they disappeared out of her sight, and wondered where they were going at this time of night. The kids hadn’t look worried at all. This was their life, this was their home.

She pulled the scratchy blanket up over her body, up to her face, and fell asleep in the moonlight.