Monday, July 15, 2013

Cuchulainn and Sand Sculpture

I have always been attracted to sand sculpture, beautiful creations built with the knowledge that they can last only as long as the tide stays out. Despite that reality, something in me wants to  hold onto them. Throughout the town of Yarmouth on Cape Cod this summer there are a variety of sand sculptures displayed as a part of Yarmouth Summer Celebration. As might be expected, there are lobsters,  dolphins and shells, but my favorite was this one in front of  the  Keltic Kitchen on Route 28.

The name on the sculpture is Cuchulainn. I remembered that he was an an Irish mythological hero, but I had to go to Wikipedia to be reminded that it was prophesied that he would  have everlasting fame but a short life. What an appropriate subject for a sand sculpture--something strong and attractive that must eventually give way to the tide.

Evidently the folks in Yarmouth feel like I do, as they have taken measures to keep these around for a bit longer. First they are erected safely away from the beach where a wave could easily sweep them back into the sea. Each sculpture is covered with a tent to protect it from the rain. (hence the shadow in my picture). Then every week they are sprayed with a mixture of water and Elmer's glue. Bill, our server at the Keltic Kitchen, told us last year's sculpture lasted until January. But even glue can't keep it around forever.

Robert Frost said, "Nothing gold can stay." These things we so value are not permanent, and yet that is what makes them all the move valuable, so go out and enjoy your sand castle while the tide is out.

1 comment:

  1. At the end of Yeats' 1893 poem, Cuchulain's Fight with the Sea,

    "Cuchulain stirred,
    Stared on the horses of the sea, and heard
    The cars of battle and his own name cried;
    And fought with the invulnerable tide."

    And years later, another Irishman "beat on, boats against the current, ceaselessly into the past."

    Cultural connection?

    Linda O.