The Drowning Man

by A.E. Paulino

I heard the last roar of the storm
before an obsidian wave,
streaked by silver reflections of moon,
swallowed me under.
A crash cymbal in reverse
as ocean sucked me down.

Dark sea, the siren's song,
a panic of sudden loneliness
in a cold abysmal, I'm taken.
Life reaches upwards,
struggle drags me fathoms further,
I see nothing.

Still, my breath is held
and water does not fill my lungs

Though I cannot collect a visable assembly,
I know my ship is still in tact.
I must reach her.

On the surface, shoved every which way
by dark waves and pounding winds;
she won't break, certainty of such
becomes air for me.
Above she holds together by all
that gathered the strength of her framework.
Under, I push and pull
as harrowing tempests of desperation grip me.

To control less, to let go and abandon,
this lifts the body back to her;
yet, death consults without logic
inspires anxiety and weight as I sink.

Unless I float I'm not worth
a return to shore with her.

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