Letting Go

outside the door leading to the East
Portland Community Center pool
a plywood boy stands guard
brandishing yellow stick
 
halt, who goes there? he asks
 
do you know the code?
 
can you measure up?
 
absolutely no one under
forty-eight inches allowed to swim
alone without parent or guardian
 
so, under boy's outstretched arm,
a little girl wiggles
(she can’t be more than five)
she lifts up on balls of feet
up on tippy-toes
stretching sapling limbs
stretching
stretching
almost
almost
then with a sigh
lands back on her heels
 
mama watches
misty-eyed
clutches yellow towels to chest
 
mama watches, she needs
no Ouija board, tarot cards, crystal ball to predict
her daughter’s future
 
not today, love, but
soon, soon, before you know it,
you'll be swimming
alone
in the deep end of the pool
 
soon, too soon,
the dark Columbia will carry
you away, away
to the blue Pacific
and beyond.
 

 

Notes: 

Poetic Asides Prompt: Day 30

For today's prompt, write a letting go poem. The poem could be about letting go of a relationship; it could be about letting go of anger; it could be about letting go of a tree branch; or it could even be about, yes, letting go of this April challenge. There are so many things we can let go.

Comments

Know this neighborhood and

Know this neighborhood and know that feeling with my own swimmer. Keep them in the pool as long as you can. Exquisite poem and feeling behind it. Best,
JDM

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.