Ocean-Echo-550x734Anton Semenov

 When I was four

I threw myself

Into the ocean

A beryl wraith spinning

A foam parasol

How I loved her,

A haunted mother

Who did not detest me


Sorrow does not

Defeat her

And her heart as sterile

As a needle promises

A return to innocence

That aging can not master


Her voice more pervasive

Than those within

An effacing static

That silences all who enter

Like a poem

Cast into the fireplace

To prevent its secrets

From spilling out


I had no idea

What dying meant

How permanent,

How transparent,

How tragic in respect

To my fragility

I might have held

My breath as a watermark

In proximity to beauty

Necessary as vanity

Which never is


I was prostrate

Sliding sideways

Across the sea floor

When you swept me

Currents and all into

Your treasonous arms

I don’t remember

What became of me

Perhaps I never woke up


When I was 4 I saw the ocean for the first time it was so beautiful that I ran into the waves without thinking. The undertow grabbed me almost immediately and I couldn’t escape it. The curious thing is I was never truly scared, I felt like I belonged there.





16 thoughts on “Drown

  1. “I might have held
    My breath as a watermark
    In proximity to beauty”

    I know I’m quoting out of context of the rest of an already fine poem but… wow. This.

  2. I know I’m taking a break, but I saw this in the reader and had to tell you – every stanza of this poem is exquisite.

  3. I don’t remember

    What became of me

    Perhaps I never woke up

    I almost drowned once. I remember the waterline of the surface and thinking that I would never reach it. I got my footing, and pushed out of the water, gasping and realizing the river in the cove was much shallower than I thought. Perhaps I never woke up either.
    Wonderful, makes-you-think-of-your-own-life poem.

  4. wow. what a moment…being pulled out by the undertow…but feeling like you belonged there…some great lines in this…the poem in the fire to keep its secrets…i like that….and wonder if we retruned to not knowing what dying meant…what that might mean to us…

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