Ah, the sea: my literary mistress. I can't help it, I can't control myself. A lovely passage like this one from Shusaku Endo's "The Samurai" will make me stray from many other fine literary passages:
"He was seeing the great ocean for the first time. There was not a trace of land of land, not even the silhouette of an island. Waves collided, jostled, and sent up war cries like a melee of countless warriors. The prow of the ship thrust like a spear into the gray sky, and the hull, shooting up a tall spout of water, seemed about to plunge into a valley in the ocean, then lurched up once again.
"The samurai's eyes swam. He could scarcely catch his breath in the gusts of wind that pounded his brow. To the east, an ocean of billowing waves. To the west , an ocean of clamouring waves. To the south and to the north, ocean as far as he could see. For the first time in his life the samurai understood the vastness of the sea. Compared to this ocean, his own marshland was little more than a single tiny speck. He groaned at the immensity of it all."