In a House by the Sea

By Sandy Gingras

51/2" x 7 1/4"
72 pp.

ISBN 1-59322-013-8

How to Build a Castle

Just start somewhere.
Who can leave the world untouched?.
Use your hands so you can feel it.
Use what washes up so that the castle grows from what is already here.
The kids who join you (and they soon as you begin) will help you and will find things that you never could have found.
They will name the castles “The Crab Shell Hotel” “ The Crooked Palace of Sand,” “The Road of Broken Shells,” and “The Pool of Dreamy Dreams” so that you’ll become attached to these places. Within an hour, it will be a world and you will be in love with it.
And you will know all of the childrens’ names.
Wipe the sand from that one’s eye.
Everyone needs a buried treasure: Put an X somewhere.
Everyone needs a high tower where the beautiful princess is imprisoned:
Make little crumbling steps with your finger that she cannot climb down
Everyone needs a road that goes nowhere.
Everyone needs a labyrinth to be lost in.
Smooth it all with your palm.
Build a dragon who might guard the city? Eat the city? Turn into a prince and marry the princess?
It’s all possible.
Get sunburned shoulders. Get sand in your bathing suit.
Race against the tide. Because the tide will be coming always is when you build a castle.
So build a wall and a moat and then another wall.
These are hopeless tasks, but build them anyway...
You know you have to.
Put your whole being into them and then laugh when they crumble.
Go ahead, laugh.
This is your world...
Get down on your knees in the Crooked Palace of Sand.
Immerse yourself in the Pool of Dreamy Dreams.
Fly the flag of seaweed.
These are your unclimbable steps,
This is your buried treasure.
Love your dragon prince with all your dragon heart.
And when you have lost to the tide, join in the losing.
Jump your feet all over your towers.
Then splash into the waves with all the otherdenizens of the lost world:
The lost boys and the lost girls.
Dive and float and spew little fountains of water.
We lose worlds like this all the time.
The world is sand
The world is fluid
Build with it.

P.O. Box 3100, Harvey Cedars New Jersey 08008
email • fax (609) 597-0422

Copyright © 2005 Down The Shore Publishing Corp. The words "Down The Shore" and logo are a registered U.S. Trademark.