Jessica VanderWerff

I am calmed by rhythmic

lapping of waves, and the familiar scent

of sunscreen. Fishing poles and nets

cover the splintered dock, like debris

after violent summer storms.

“Don’t trip,” she says; my feet

have already found a way to become

entangled in a net. I wiggle them like little fish

and set them free.

The sun gleams off water so clear,

it could be glass. I decide to jump in,

shattering the silence. I am sinking.

Being embraced inside a fish’s

home, where it is quiet and dark.

Strong arms are around me, pulling me

back to the surface:

a place where fish can’t live,

and motorboats grumble at the world

as though they are displeased with it.

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