Anisha and the Rocks

When Anisha went down to the beach near the river mouth and out by the houses that were nothing more than shacks of wood and scrap metal, corrugated to look like the waves or the sand blown by the wind, she didn’t expect to find anything more than sand, shells, and the Rocks.

“Alright there, Nisha!” her mother called as she headed off. “You’d better be home by summer–your daddy’s cookin!”

But Anisha was already out the door and her strappy sandles were slapping the hard packed gravel road as she ran.

If she was lucky Mica would be down by the river mouth and his friends all of them. They always told the greatest stories, picked up from the fisher village that doubled as a meazily sea port.

Once she was out of eye sight from her house she slowed to a walk. Her skinny legs seemed to dangle out in front of her with each step she took. They’d begun to seem unruly to her, which wasn’t a good feeling, more like someone had added on some inches that she wasn’t aware of and she kept stubbing her toes. She’d thought she’d broken one the other day. Smashed it into one of the rickety kitchen chairs.

“Nisha! You gotta be more careful!” cried her mother, as Anisha hit the deck and squirmed around on the ground in pain.

But her toe hadn’t been broke. It felt fine now, and she flexed it just to make sure.

The unpaved road was lined by trees. They arched over and gave a smattering of shaded shimmers as the wind blew and brought the sound of tree-whispers and the smell of sea salt. She knew, just through the trees on her left was the river. If she listened real close she could just make out it’s murmur. But with the shivering of the trees it was difficult.

It took her ten minutes to get to the place where the road ended and the trail began, then another five to come to the river mouth and the beach.

Nobody was there but the gulls. They wheeled in the vast blue sky that met the vast blue ocean out in the distance. Thirty meters out to see the Rocks of Boheama loomed. Anisha had heard stories from Mica that young men from the village climbed the tallest, Bo’emata, nearly a full grand in height. But you had to climb it in at low tide, and more than one man had died in the attempt over the years, Mica said.