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One day wading

entirely alone

I was overcome by a wave.

Knocked down

I could have risen

on my own,

or I could have allowed

drowning in the

churned foam,

or I could have taken

a hand that was

unknown and

appeared to be



I chose the hand,

which pulled me halfway.

Halfway beyond all that was

brutal, beyond the

rhythmic motion

in my head

beyond my pounding, crashing

heart: incessant!

Beyond the waning muscles

needed to swim

beyond this useless

and uncaressed skin

that could not even

keep me warm

above or below the water.


I was dragged shoreward

halfway on my knees,

expecting to be appeased.

But then the hand just

let me go, and I struggled

to stay afloat.

Gradually, though,

I began to

swim with ease

because it was away

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