July 05, 2010

Evening Swim – draft 2

This is supposed to be inspired by Amy Clampitt. Check out her poem 'A Hedge of Rubber Trees'.

Evening Swimming – draft 2

Hatchbacks park on soft needles and husks of cones; we walk into

a desiccated amber evening heavy with sap and pine.

A woodpecker flashes red and green, and edges

along scales of balk into safe shade;

windows of gold fall into our path, through insect chandeliers

parted by waving hands. We search for

a still mirror holding the brown and green

of surrounding peaks; jaws of fells that open at pebbled shores.

We peel ourselves into insulating skins and duck into jade

wilderness; an ice hand runs intimately

along our spines and pushes our lungs empty.

Scissored bodies cut through the light that penetrates

the surface; arms arc through air and reach into distance

to pull water like rope; faces sneer sideways to sip

oxygen and turn downwards, expelling bubble streams.

Shoulders swell with fatigue and teeth grit against distance;

currents blow shades of cold across us and taste sweet with earth.

We stop as our thighs brush stones and try to reacquaint

ourselves with gravity. The pause is our prize:

the fells are an hour older, and crowned with summer.

We pull off our suits and skin-warm water

slips through our limbs. Clouds gather around

the dimming warmth, one clasps a rainbow in its centre:

Heaven’s kiss on our drained bodies.

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