When the lake becomes an inland sea
and waves grow into steely green
I swim and ride the swell
watch the rolling coils of clouds blow past
see young gulls peer down
curious companions, dusky dark
emphatic punctuation against
a bright and wondrous day.
Beating upwind into the current
my movement barely perceptible
in this muscular sea that heaves my body
from rippling sand to sky
through surging crests of foam
I stroke and stroke, find the syncopated rhythm
that doubles so two arms simultaneously
pull through the essential stillness
of my element.
The shoreline moves now
and in this slow frenzy anticipation grows
of the downstream leg, of being swept back
lifted and carried in sweet harmony
with the water and the air.
From Tower Poetry, Vol. 60 #1, Summer 2011