I pace the aging dock, its wood
groaning in the shallow water. My summer-
browned legs quiver at the thought
of walking the plank. I cannot see
the joy in swimming in this,
where beneath the surface
dart tiny fish, slimy reeds
that will seize my ankles and toes.
I can see, though, how
her face has slendered.
I can see her hair, silver.
Arms losing muscle,
frailty creeping through
her limbs, body small
in her bathing suit.
I can see the way her mouth
defies the direction of her aging
each time I step forward.
I hear her laughter, a reflection of the sun,
as I inch towards the water’s edge,
a laughter that one day
I won’t be able
to recall the sound of.
I jump in.