23 November 2014

Your Silt Dreams

What you said and what you wanted
were never the same thing.

Later, we wondered what
might have happened if you ever spit out the gravel,
remnants of a dam,
never commissioned but built anyway.
Words washed downstream in the flood
of desires piled up behind it –
silt dreams of what might have been
what you might have been –
if not for drowning yourself,
weighted, pulled under by the current.

Why didn’t you splash,
wave your arms wildly?
How else would we have noticed
your silent distress,
distracted as we were
by the squeals of young ones playing on the shore,
by the kites and birds soaring above us?
we could have thrown you a lifeline,
reeled you in, administered first aid.

But you floated along,
until the undertow we couldn’t acknowledge
lured you quietly out to sea,
your submerged limbs thrashing,
tempting those familiar sharks
that devoured you, slowly, from within,
while on the shore, we built sandcastles
that would be washed away by the tide before dawn.

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