Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Summer Beach Tale

As a matter of habit these days, when the sun appears everyone runs outside and so it was last weekend. My husband and I took a short car ride to the beach in the late afternoon after the dark clouds turned bright. As we approached the beach parking lot, a small group of piper plovers was sunbathing in spillage of water from the pond nearby. While they splished and splashed, I moved closer with my iPhone ready to take a photo when my husband called out to me to stand back. 
"Stand back, these endangered birds are very protective of their young. They will attack you if you closer to their territory."
I gingerly moved away but all to my surprise the entire group flew instantly into the sky and started hovering closer to the ground. 

Realizing that I was close to being bombarded, I called to my husband to wait for me. Feeling like I was on the set of the Birds trying to dodge attacks, we headed for the beach pathway and a peaceful walk to shore. As we passed the piper plover protected habitat, we saw hundreds of birds sunbathing and parading around their nesting ground. One photographer was off to the edge of the habitat quietly waiting for a chance to photograph these small, endangered shorebirds. 

As we watched the plovers, suddenly with remarkable speed and sound, they gracefully flew in a beautiful grouping from sand to sky. They swooned and called out to one another as we slowly walked across the beach. Then, suddenly one plover decided to swoop down, buzz around my husband, and peck his head. With a jerky movement, he grabbed his head to make sure he had his hair in tack. I was surprised by his frantic swatting of the air and immediately put my hands up to protect myself but by then, the plover ascended up into the sky. 

While my husband did not think this was a malicious act, he realized the plover was protecting his territory. As we moved a little bit further away from the fenced-off protected area, we realized that there is an instinctive need for both birds as well as humans to protect their young.

Greg Gard, 1-day old piping plover chick, Nickerson Beach
skywings take flight 

swooping and swooning
over sand-colored dunes

beachgoers walk peacefully
until head-pecker
©CV, 2019
(The above poem is my first, humble attempt to tell a story using the cherita format.)

Today is Slice of Life Tuesday so I am off to join Two Writing Teachers.


  1. I remembered that a cherita tells a story. And that is about all. When I checked closely, I could see that it's a one line stanza, a two line stanza, and a three line stanza effort. You rocked this first attempt, Carol!

    1. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment, Ramona. I wrote another cherita for my Poetry Friday post today. I am enjoying that poetic format. I hope your 4th of July was fun-filled.

  2. Your retelling if the time at the beach allowed me to be right there. Isn’t it something that little creatures that do attract us with grace and beauty can also terrify us with such a quick change to attack? I like your poem, and the simple line “from sand to sky” in the narrative is lovely.

    1. Diane, thanks for stopping by to read and comment. It is always great to connect with you. Enjoy the 4th. While it is a beach day here we have a barbecue to attend so a beach trip will wait for another day.