young woman smiling on beach

Eve Goodman is a singer-songwriter from the North Wales coast. Her writing took her South to Cardiff, where she studied a degree in English Literature and joined a band. Her musical roots and love of poetry gives her writing a lyrical, visual quality. She now lives in Cornwall where she writes and performs. She likes to ask questions.

As a Story Terrace writer, Eve interviews customers and turns their life stories into books. Get to know her better: you can read an autobiographical story of her own below. Get in touch today to work with her!

Worn by Waves

I was taught to beach comb before I was taught to comb my own hair. My mother, with her sandy curls and sea-holly eyes, had her priorities just right. Every evening after school, she’d walk with me and my brother along the beach outside our home, to see what treasures the tide had turned up for us. At the time, canary yellow sea shells were our favourite. Mum liked to keep them in old glass bottles around the house, and we kept a special eye out for these miniature suns. They would smile at us amongst the pale pebbles and crispy brown seaweed, each time triggering a gleeful squeal from the discoverer. Into our gold-lined pockets they’d go, to be decanted and counted later on the kitchen table as the kettle boiled and Dad returned from work.

We soon progressed onto cowrie shells. Mum and Dad knew a beach on Anglesey where the tideline was stitched with their favourite little porcelain buttons. These were far less common than the yellow shells. We’d sift patiently through sections of beach, coming together occasionally to compare our collection thus far with one another. The thing about cowries was that they came in clusters. Once you found a patch, you could double your numbers in seconds. This feeling of simple joy and achievement was indescribable, and well worth the wait.

As the years went by, our shell selections changed with the tides. We learnt about the coast from the sand up, each weekend focusing on gathering something new. Periwinkles, mermaid’s purses, cockles, limpets, sea urchins, scallops… these all featured on our beachy repertoire, and spilled across the kitchen table at various stages in our life. When I was fifteen I got into sea glass. I liked the sense of optimism: made by man, but made beautiful by nature. These little gems were like jewels of hope. Old bottles, no longer needed, were battered and worn by the waves, and transformed into glowing beads of colour over hundreds of years. They glistened brightly in the darkest of coves. I spent my days turning over pebbles and thoughts. I’d keep what was beautiful and useful. I left the rest behind. After a day at the beach my mind would be clear, like a rockpool.

Some people look for answers on the horizon. I find mine amongst the stones.

child on beach

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