Here's another poem I'm considering sending out there into the wild world. Comments and suggestions are welcome. And, yes, I know I need to move beyond the "considering."
First Failed Swim Lesson
Chlorine stings your nostrils
as you open the double doors.
The top of the water is motion in stillness
like wavy colonial glass.
You want to slip under the silk surface,
cold at first them warmer
as you wear it.
You want to glide aimlessly, effortlessly
or float on your back studying
stark naked rafters. You want
to be a child again—splashing,
cannonballing, dipping, and diving with ease.
But you are not a child.
You’re the mother of the one
who won’t put his head underwater even
as his peers splash and their parents snicker
because at the end of the night
they will go on and he will have to repeat
this level. You can’t swim for him
and you can’t convince him to trust you.
No, you are forced to watch
his apprehension and reluctance
to be where you yearn to be.
And if you know my pediatrician, please reassure her that, yes, we're going to keep trying swim lessons until we get it right.