I’m a man alone on the Beach of Language, and all I have around me is the Sand of Words.

As the sun sets, I stare into the placid ocean as the tide comes in, and all I can see is my own face—the same face as always, but a different face than yesterday.

My bare feet sink into the cool, compacted sand. Fast-moving mist slaps my shivering face. My lips are chapped with salt.

The moon shoots out a silver sliver across the water, cutting my face in two.

Just as soon as the lunar light reaches my eyes, hands grab my shoulders. I spin around. Nothing. There is no one there. I feel a tap on my shoulder. I spin around again. Nothing.

There is a chuckle. I smile. This is our nightly game.  

I sprint away, picking up handfuls of granular words and pitching them in all directions. The Phantom of How I Feel pokes and prods and dances around me. His goal is to get my attention but avoid being revealed. And I use the only tool I have, hoping enough grains touch his form so I can get a momentary glimpse of my adversary. This chase is what we were created for.

When dawn breaks, the Phantom sleeps and I spend the day building sandcastles, busying myself in the playpen of my imagination. I pack the words together and make cities of Truth for miniature version of me and the Phantom to have their own mini-chases in.

Before I know it, the sun falls again, the Phantom puts on his gloves, and the tide rushes in.

I stare at another day’s face as all of my carefully-architected Truth ebbs back into the vast ocean of everything I am unable to say.

The moon winks at me, and the game begins again.