On Waves 

I thought how, with the peeling wave as an ideal of perfection, the surfer’s object of passion becomes the very essence of ephemerality-not a thing to be owned or a goal to be attained but rather a fleeting state to inhabit. So much more of my time, after all, passed in the dreaming and searching than in the actual riding of waves; so much more time spent driving the coast and floating between sets. Of a whole year of devotion, probably no more than a day was spent truly on my feet and surfing, so I couldn’t view such a moment as this without an ardent, frustrated desire, a near-religious craving for wholeness. Unlike so many other passions: while on might, I suppose, wish for a bloom to remain in blossom, for a ripening grape to hang always on the vine-yearnings John Keats made his own, for fleeting beauty and youth, the understandably hopeless hope that we might freeze our world’s better moments-the wave’s plenitude is rather in the peeling of the petal, the very motion of the falling fruit. – Daniel Duane


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