Monday, September 17, 2012


It was the goal in the center
of everyone's summer;
you sat on a rock in the sun
thinking, I could do that now
and all at once there you were
with your toes in the water, wading out.
The air tingled in your nose
as you struck out past the dropoff,
further out than you had ever been;

the lake bottom disappeared beneath you
and where the water a moment ago was filled
with sunbacked shadows now it was
dark, cold, a glimpse of what infinity
must look like. You saw hints of drowned stumps
impossibly far down, tried to ignore
the voices calling you back--
the only thing that gave you
courage was one strong voice saying, "Let her try,
for Christ's sake!"
                                and when you clambered
onto that far piney bank winded, arms aching,
you suddenly understood
what halfway there really meant


  1. Oh my friggin word, JT; this is friggin perfect. A moment in time capturing a moment in even larger time and captured perfectly, too.

    The imagery, like the water, crystal clear & cpativating. The swim like flying. Ignoring the almost unignorable naysayers. The reaching the far bank and the lookback.

    And every time, after the first time, you make that swim, it's shorter.

    Perfection, first line to last.
    I wish I'd written it.

  2. Your comments rival the poem, m'dear. Thank you. (I'm blushing)

  3. Much approval. Had no choice but to immediately read it aloud.