by J J Cohen
To your left you will see a picture I snapped along the Marginal Way, a seacoast path that connects the village of Ogunquit to Perkins Cove in southern Maine. The trail is neither long nor solitary, though at the right time of year you can have a vista of dark rocks and thundering waves to yourself. I've been traversing the path almost every year since I was a small child, when my parents would typically take the little Cohens there at the end of a beach day. We'd run from one end of the trail to the other, have ice cream near the lobster boats, then hike back along the path -- often as the moon was rising over the water.
On more recent vacations I've been taking my kids to the Marginal Way to clamber along the rocks and study sea life in tidal pools. We have a tradition of grabbing croissants from a local bakery and eating them within a secluded cove some steps down from the pedestrian path. Katherine and Alexander are convinced that pirates once buried loot beneath the sands here, and we speculate what we would do with the treasure should we be the ones to unearth an ancient chest ... and what curse we might earn by disturbing the fortune.
This year I noticed that a nearby cove had sprouted stacks of rocks. They are obviously the work of human hands, and remind me of the little lithic structures I've seen in Sedona AZ atop the red rocks, typically where astral vortexes are supposed to manifest. I doubt these Maine rocks have any connection to New Age mysticism ... but then again, I have no idea how they got there or who created them. I'd guess there are more than a hundred of these stacks in the cove. I'll even admit that Katherine and I made one ourselves, a miniature stack right at the tide line, knowing the waves would topple our architecture within a few hours. Something innately pleasing resided in that mixture of enduring stone and ephemeral art.
Oddly enough, I also noticed that a store in the village was selling small stacks of plastic rocks glued together in imitation of these diminutive seaside Stonehenges.