You See Him Com­ing

The London Magazine - - MAGGIE BUTT -

way­off along the beach bare­foot weighed down with his wares tow­els-and-scarves in bright­colours or wooden beaded neck­laces or strips-of-co­conut in iced wa­ter any­thing he thinks might tempt you but his call across the sand is in­dis­tinct

and easy to ig­nore so you dis­ap­pear into your book reap­ply sun­cream build a sand­cas­tle with the kids topped with shells and washe­dround by a moat which you try to fill with sea which soak­s­away­faster than you can run the next buck­et­ful

so you flip for a swim splash­ing ea­chother ly­ing­back on a wa­terbed of salt or if the surf’s-up try to catch waves as they can­ter to the shore rid­ing eu­pho­ria though some­times they throw you break over-your-head leave you splut­ter­ing for air crawl­ing to land

where as you dry­out he mat­er­alises quite­close and you think if you shut your eyes and pre­tend-to-be-asleep he’ll pass-on-by but then he’s right next to you with his sandy feet and his bun­dle be­cause you’d al­most for­got­ten he comes for ev­ery­one

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