Always

If anyone has been overlooking me, it must have been me
Sometimes I’m drowning but everyone sees
Except me
How can you be quiet and loud at the same time?
I think my heart beats too loud because I won’t open up my mouth
And say
I see myself
in quicksand

Fifteen feet to the bottom of the pool
I was always too scared to touch the concrete bottom
How do you leap towards death with a smile on your face?
How do you hold your breath?
Where does the confidence come from?
Why didn’t I get my share
when they were divvying everything up?

I dream of being a lioness. Always
But I’ve been too scared to tackle a wildebeast
Always looking backward for backup
Who is willing to put me on their back?
No desire in me to feel the strain in my knees
to struggle to breathe,
I don’t know how it feels to kick off from the bottom,
To move on my own strength alone.

Waves are therapy to me
The uncertainty of the ocean is like God before you
Sometimes, she drags you out and buries you
in the stomach of something large
Sometimes, she lets you be the bigger thing
Lets you bring your head back above water
Breathe the air in your lungs
Decide if you want to spin again
Show her your soft underbelly and throat
Let her decide if she will rip you open
If she will feed you to her other children.
If she will drown you in her depths.

I hide in my father’s arms until waves come in
Until I don’t know how deep until the bottom or what it is made of
I can dive towards nothingness, towards a fate I cannot see
Never the bottom of a pool.
Never the certain ending and eventual rise back to reality,
I am seeking a new fate, one with bigger hands shaping it than my own.
Always.

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