"Turning your head you see emerald waves breaking upon the distant beach of ivory, backed by feathery palms waving in the sunlight against a sky of pure azure.
"You wave goodbye ..and slowly descend, climbing down step by step. Then the world changes.
"There is no more harsh sunlight, but delicate blue-greens with a fluttering of shadows everywhere. Huge pink and orange growths rise on all sides -you know they are living corals.
"Now your feet touch ground ..an ostrich feather of a sea-plume as tall as yourself sweeps against you...at your elbow is a rounded table of lapis lazuli on which are blossoming three flowers...Their petals are resplendent in hues of gold and malachite,and are fluted and fringe like some rare unknown orchid.
"Only a moment has passed since you left the world overhead, or was it many hours?
"All I ask of each reader is this- Don't die without having borrowed, stolen, purchased or made a helmet of sorts, to glimpse for yourself this new world. Books and aquaria are, to such an experience, only what a time-table is to an actual tour, or what a dried dusty piece of coral in a parlor is to this unsuspected realm of gorgeous life and color existing with us today on the self-same planet Earth"
From Beneath Tropic Seas: A Record of Diving Among the Coral Reefs of Haiti, by William Beebe, published by Blue Ribbon Books, 12th Printing, July 1936
Offered for sale as of 7-27-09: