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Gulf Chronicle

  Two black figures, dotted on the white sandbar. The two figures were only bean-sized, jumping as they walked, the sea in front of them delighted them, and their shouts came in the wind, like waves rushing ashore, coming one after another. The sandbar they were on, a pile of white sand at the mouth of the river into the sea, after the double extrusion of the river and the sea tide, from the bottom of the bay, has been emerging out of the sea, and in the past ten years or so, and constantly extended outward, pointing to the inside of the bay, the end disappeared in the rapids.
  The sandbar is set in the sea, almost flush with the water, and when the wind and waves rise, the water covers the sandbar and then flows away again. The sandbar grows every year, and in a few years, it may cross the mouth of the bay, extending this sea passage to the outer ocean, unknowingly building a sea corridor, those tireless wanderers, venture out from the sandbar. The end of the sandbar is the limit of the land, which is not broken, but submerged in water and plunged into chaos, with sand and gravel flowing and gathering and dispersing, like a viscous fluid between solid and liquid. The sides of the sandbar also change shape under the lapping of waves. The whole sandbar looked like it would sink at any moment. When the world was hastily created, everything was not yet set, it experienced this shock and sedimentation. Just bend over and stare at the sandbar for a moment, one can be in the flood era.
  Two people walking at the end of the sandbar, tentative steps, is to meet the rising tide of the wave, swallowed ankle, they touch like shrinking, and finally was chased by the water, sprinting back. The depths of the bay are difficult to wade through. From the map, the bay is located in the unknown corner, smooth shoreline insect-like a small hole, sunken inward, almost circular, filled with seawater, the narrow channel at the mouth of the bay with the outer ocean. This intrusion into the land of the sea, sent a cold damp air, not yet see the sea, face already slightly feel cold.
  The two headlands that hug the bay look across the sea, leaving only narrow portals, and the two headlands were once the horror of everyone talking about the Cape of Death. The rocky walls on both sides of the headlands are steep, almost perpendicular to the sea, and the walls are yellowed and bare with thin, hard muscles, and rocks roll down on windy days. There are reefs near the headland, which are nails buried below the surface of the sea. When encountering high winds, the sailors rely on their arms to scull and wrestle with the gale, how can a flesh and blood body withstand the reckless force of nature? The next day the wind and waves calm, the beach is covered with pieces of the ship board, the fracture of the huge force to tear the ship board shocking. Even the finger thick four-pronged iron nails, but also broken into a right angle. Broken boat, scattered in the bay, full of wreckage no one to clean up.
  Some people say that the fishing boats are often in trouble because there is a big crab at the exit of the bay. The monster guards the mouth of the bay, and I do not know how many years it has survived and grown into a huge thing. The crab did not show itself easily until the wind and waves, when the crab was disturbed and became extremely irritable, it woke up from its slumber and raised its pincers to cut off the passing boats. Some survivors claim that as the ship was swaying, two pillars appeared on the water, the upper one connected to the dark clouds and the lower one planted deep in the water, the pillar-shaped eyes of the crab.
  The story of the great crab has been passed down in the bay for hundreds of years, and I wanted to see the crab’s eyes on the sea with my own eyes, but I could not. The twin pillars standing outside the bay often appear in my dreams. Usually at night, when the clouds open and the moon rises, two black pillars are erected on the sea, black and opaque, casting only two black shadows on the sea, which extend all the way to the shore and fall on the hills, then rise with the terrain. The birds resting in the forest were frightened by the black shadows and hovered in the air, not falling for a long time. I woke up from my dream, already sweat stained.
  Such a scene is rarely dreamed of today. The fisherman in the diesel-engine boat, shaking in the vibration of the motor, the era of sculling oars is far away, he no longer need to exert physical strength. At this moment, the bow of the boat is upwind, he only has to hold his shoulders to stand in the bow, the boat will meet the wind, straight out of the mouth of the bay, out of sight.
  The sea introduced from the sea, people see it as the inner lake, but it is more irritable than the inner lake, occasionally revealing a hideous face, but also within the limits of tolerance. The fishermen by the bay are used to the climate inside the bay, and compared with the wind and waves of the outer ocean, this is just an insignificant corner, so small that it can be ignored. Leaving the bay and going to the outer ocean is the dangerous place, and many people have left here for the outer ocean and never returned.
  The bay is infested with eels in the mud and sand. The eel’s body is slippery, and it slips out of the hand, making it difficult to catch. The eel catcher holds a long pole with a large bent iron hook tied to the end of the pole, which is tossed in the water, and the sharp edge of the iron hook pierces the eel’s body and locks the eel in the arc of the iron hook, so that it can’t escape even if it swings its head and tail. The killing in the shallows continues as the fisherman chases the eel, ruffling his long pole all the way down the shore and into the distance. A few little brains emerge from the water – the fishermen’s boys are not yet old enough to sail away, so they try their luck in the water first. They were light and inexplicably joyful, like freshly shelled ducklings floating in a wooden basin, their fur bright, their eyes flowing, their heads sideways as they surveyed the world before them. They swim first in the river and then with it into the shallow waters of the bay.
  The river comes from the hills inland and appears to be a very thin line from a distance. After crossing a stone bridge, the river suddenly widens into a fan, pouring fresh water into the bay day and night. As the day approached noon, the river glistened, barely visible as it flowed, constantly passing away, vacated immediately by those who came later to fill the void, the lights on the surface of the water did not move with it, still resting where they were, these lights, though lazy, had their source far in the sky.
  The rainstorm came suddenly. Cumulonimbus clouds crowded and stacked, spliced into a black curtain in the air, purple lightning rooted down in the clouds, cracked roots covered half of the sky, a short pause and then extinguished, a little later it sounded a roll of thunder. The thunder clogged the hills around the bay, mixing with the echoes in one place for a long time. The lines of rain hanging upside down from the sky, the clouds are uneven, a little heavier on one side, the rain falls first, the next is also implicated, followed by. The first to touch the bottom of those lines of rain and the sea, stirring up a white mist, followed by the rain just reached half-air, obviously unevenly spilled. The cumulonimbus clouds moved in the wind, carrying the rain back and forth, not long before they came ashore, and the rain fell to the ground, creating an even bigger racket.
  I passed by the fishing village just as thunder and lightning roamed the sky, and debris from the rain was already falling in the air, so I hurried to take shelter under the gatehouse of a fishing family. The summer rainstorm came quickly and closed quickly, so I was able to pass after a while. With the mountains behind the fishing village and the bay facing it, the rain was projected into the square box-like courtyard, where hail was mixed with spherical crystals jumping on the roof. Many people, clad in black tarpaulins and armed with shovels, came out of their homes in the rain. They went behind their houses to dig ditches to prevent the heavy water from the hills from hitting the back wall.
  The day was as dark as night. Some people turned on their flashlights, and the rain lines were bright in the pillar of light. People poured out and busied themselves around the anthill. Beyond the cascade of eaves drops, the water rolled down the hill, coating the rocky walls with a layer of white water, crashing to the ground and rushing all the way down into the newly opened trench behind the house, the black earth nestled in the white bright torrent. When the rain stopped, the flowing water glass shattered like a crisp.
  The dark clouds cleared, the sky appeared bright again, and the sun came out, steaming hot on the wet ground as if it were descending into boiling water. By a trail back to the sea, the sudden blue, the spikes of the waves jutting toward the sky, the brightness of the water related to the jumping of the waves, they never tire.
  Ahead of me appeared boulders, part of the coast but higher than the ground, with narrow cracks in the middle of the boulders, dividing them into two halves. I climbed up the boulder and looked down at the gap, which was as wide as a span of steps and as thin as a person could pass sideways, and the seawater at high tide arrived under the gap and sent shells. Shells have been weathered, held in the hands of a touch that is broken, turned into gray powder, fingers in the shells with a little force to poke out the round hole. Through the shell to look at the bay, the whole bay of seawater are packed in the round hole. Move away from the eyes, the shells are still in the palm of your hand. At that moment, the bay was so light.

  There are still traces of a fire next to the rock wall, where a fisherman built a wild stove to cook fish and shrimp. The unburned pine boughs are still there, and the rock face leaves the shape of a black fire – long and thin in stature, with three sloping spikes falling backwards, noting the direction of the wind at the time. With the wind drumming, the water in the pot had long pressed on, and the fisherman threw the small shrimp in his net into the pot, temporarily holding down the boiling waves. The shrimp saw the hot water, red in color, still bouncing live shrimp, the body curled up. Just then, another handful of salt grains descended from the air, coarse salt from seawater, which prevents seafood from rotting and deteriorating. When the hot water came back up, the fisherman picked up the pot, went to the slope of the rock wall in the sunrise, dumped the whole pot on it, jumped sideways to avoid the burst of hot soup. After the steaming white smoke, the boiling water flows away and the shrimp are left on the stone, and after exposure to the sun, they become sea rice that can be preserved for a long time. Only the sea rice made in this way will have a biting freshness in the mouth, they have been right at the tip of the wind, cooked by wild fire and coarse salt, drying in the wild, and of course tainted with the grumpy temper of the fishermen.
  Fishermen have long since retrieved the sea rice, vaguely visible traces on the stone, shedding shrimp whiskers still left on the stone, and a broken shrimp tail, two tail fins hidden in the tip of a needle, the shrimp tanning people have long since disappeared.
  Facing the bay, behind the pine forest and wilderness, wood, stone, grass and mud fill the road, few people come here. The wilderness of the bay’s hinterland rushes through the nostrils – the rain-soaked ground is earthy, the stems and leaves of grass and trees break in the rainstorm, giving off a greenish smell, and the sea breeze sends a bitter salt. The inner texture near the bay is extraordinarily clear after the rain, and the land, the sea, and the plants, each showing their original faces, open to the sky.
  The hares appeared in the rock crevices, and in the unseen depths were deep chambers, perhaps the nests of hares. The hare, which had wandered to this place, found the secret passage in the stone crevice, and its body went in and out freely, living a secluded life in the stone chamber. I do not know if its sleep at night will be disturbed by the tide, or perhaps it has long been accustomed to, in the sound of the tide to sleep soundly. Sleeping with its ears hanging down at its back, shaking from time to time, in its drowsiness, it heard the wind outside.
  It was a gray rabbit, it jumped and jumped, out of the corridor of the stone crevice, and came to the beach, its fur color and the earth color on the ground similar, the sea breeze blowing its furry hair, I realized its presence. Its two hind legs on the ground does not move, the upper half of its body stands up, and is not afraid of people. At that time it had the whole bay to itself, and I began to envy its life.
  I saw it on the beach the other day, running on the sand, stopping from time to time to look at the sea, its long ears turned outward, as if listening to the waves crashing, and its tiny heart beating in response. In front of it, the grass was already deep and dense, and it went into the grass, its body submerged in the green, with only its ears moving over the tips. Before entering the dense forest, the gray hare began to run, its two strong hind legs stomping, its rump raised high the moment its front paws swooped down to the ground, the white fuzz on its short tail having a moment in the air.
  The hare was like a hermit, leaving less and less room for it. The roots of the boulder extended down into the sea, and the tide overflowed, flooding the oyster bushes. The green shells of the oysters were connected in pieces, just like the scales of the boulder. Compared with the lively and active hare, the oyster is almost sluggish, tainted with the habit of the boulder, and the white flesh inside the shell looks like an embryo, and stays at home all its life, refusing to take a step out of the door. Fortunately, the hare does not eat oysters, oysters and hares as neighbors, neighbors with opposite personalities, but also in peace.
  A rainstorm just now washed the dust off the boulders, and the slope was dried by the sun, and the rain turned into steam, through which the distant sky distorted and swirled. Lying on the slope, the sea is in the eyes, listening to the sound of the waves below, the wave crests hit and then scattered in all directions. They don’t really break, they reunite.
  At dusk, the world suddenly quiet, the fireball on the sea level like a giant orange hanging in the air, endless folds and depressions, in that moment there is nowhere to hide, all exposed under the twilight sky, the bay is full of red light burning hot, the fireball around the release of black smoke. At this moment, the bay is empty, only the sound of waves hitting the reef is still in the ear, making people feel like they are in the kingdom of the gods.

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