the song of the sea 7

Sydney February 2013 – October 2014 (5 photos)

Leonardo da Vinci once said, “Water is the driving force of all nature“.

the song of the sea 8

His words are true. Water is essential. The race of Men find it irresistible. I see it in the eyes and hearts of Men.

They flock to it. They live it. They love it. They desire it.

the song of the sea 2

Without fail, their gaze wonders and wanders across bodies of water, ever dreaming, ever hoping …

man and the sea

I have seen this all before. Many years ago, when I was but a young dragon, my great friend, Legolas would stare out to sea and I would listen to his song. I can still hear him now:

To the Sea, to the Sea! The white gulls are crying,
The wind is blowing, and the white foam is flying.
West, west away, the round sun is falling.
Grey ship, grey ship, do you hear them calling,
The voices of my people that have gone before me?
I will leave, I will leave the woods that bore me;
For our days are ending and our years failing.
I will pass the wide waters lonely sailing.
Long are the waves on the Last Shore falling,
Sweet are the voices in the Lost Isle calling,
In EressΓ«a, in Elvenhome that no man can discover,
Where the leaves fall not: land of my people for ever!

Legolas’ Song of the Sea
(J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings)

the song of the sea 3

“And then as the Darkness lifted across the land, I could not help but sense the great sadness to come. My dear friends, the wood elves, ever enchanted by the sea, would succumb to their desires and the forces of nature. In the weeks after the fall of Sauron and the destruction of the One Ring, they answered the call of the Valar and sailed the seas to Valinor in the west, never to be seen again. I watched them sail away from the Grey Havens in their ships. I still miss them greatly.”

…extract from “Time and Tide: Reminiscences of a Wood Dragon” (yet to be published).

Leica Etcetera, Olympus Etcetera, Photography Etcetera

The song of the sea


57 thoughts on “The song of the sea

  1. I have been listening to the song of the sea ever since I first heard it as a child. I never grow tired of the unending refrain of the echoes it placed in my my heart. Thank you so much for this wonderful post.

    What can you see on the horizon?
    Why do the white gulls call?
    Across the sea a pale moon rises
    The ships have come to carry you home

    And all will turn to silver glass
    A light on the water
    All souls pass

  2. Gorgeous B&W shots by the beach, Dragon. How typical of Australians to spend a sunny day at the beach. Hope it wasn’t too hot for you. And oh…are you writing a book?

  3. I would never have thought of combining Bondi with TLOTR … but it works wonderfully ! You have a true eye, alright – but not like Sauron’s !

  4. Powerful, yet beautiful! You so cleverly weaved the great song, quote, and photos into this song of the sea. “Time and Tide”, so looking forward to reading the book. A magnificent post. Thank you, Dragon

  5. I always love your pictures of the sea and people at the sea – black and white or colour! πŸ™‚ I have been wondering in recent years what it is that compels humans to gather by the sea. The only theory I have come up with is it may have something to do with originally coming from water ourselves (in the womb) we could almost say we started out as mermaids and mermen!! Sounds hilarious, but it’s very close to that if you think about it.

    The sound of the sea is often associated to peace and calm, and I’m sure babies in the womb do get alarmed by things sometimes, but not nearly as much as adults do with all the stresses of life. And do they hear to some extent the sound of water?

    Just after my mother died I had a huge urge to go to the coast to be by the sea. I would spend the afternoon enjoying being by the sea all on my own, which was something I had never done before, and felt an enormous sense of peace there. Years later I wondered if that was a desperate attempt to calm my inner storm with vague associated thoughts and feelings of my earliest subconscious memory of my Mother. When my Father died I was attracted to going to the theatre, and if anyone was responsible for introducing me to the theatre – it was my Father. Strange how we find comfort in the smallest connections. But my Mother wasn’t more attracted to the sea than anyone else. So why water, and my Mother? I think I should have been a psychiatrist! πŸ˜‰

    But a generally interest in the sea could also be the way we have made a lot of those areas tourist attractions – that will always be a draw of course. And I do love watching surfers on the sea. There is something fascinating about watching a tiny human ride the giant sea! πŸ™‚

    • Thousands have lived without love, not one without water. β€” W. H. Auden

      Actually I think you may be right. In the womb, we are in water and don’t experience air until delivery. Scientists have postulated similar to what you have described. We need water to survive and that’s why we’re drawn to it. Regarding your feelings after your parent’s death, I think we all find comfort in doing something that makes us feel closer to them.

  6. beautiful photos, Lignum… people seem so tiny on some of them!
    true, nothing like the sea… I was born in a town on the Black sea… but now I live 500 km away… it really can get nostalgic when you are away from it..

    it’s sooo funny, I’m now listening to a song from the soundtrack to The Desolation of Smaug… though it’s I see fire… not sea… it’s still a beautiful background music for your lovely post πŸ™‚

  7. I missed this “song” while I was in Portugal. That quote is true. There is order and symmetry in your beach shots – how wonderful, and beautifully captured!

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