Launching into the sea, you flip on
your back and float like flotsam.
Behind I wade waist high, bracing against
waves that buffet and barge me.
Positioning yourself to blunt
the worst of the waves,
you coax me like a toddler.
Breathless false starts – gasping half strokes,
my legs never fully committing.
After each failure, I chide
if you can get on the back of a motor bike-
Success is a few rushed strokes,
until I run out of bottle and breathe,
my feet groping for the seabed again.
Leaving me in baby-pool shallows;
on a sunbed your concentration
is cleaved between a Rebus thriller and my antics
as I practice thrashed sequences of strokes
that you reward with the odd thumbs up.
Late afternoon the sea naps;
I find its tranquillity infectious,
we swim abreast in grown up depths,
me every now and then dropping my toe
like a tiny anchor to skim the sea floor.
And there is something elemental
in this synchronised experience,
that is novel to me, but you take for granted.
Wading shorewards, I laugh and gasp superlatives,
perhaps because I no longer fear
that you will swim away from me-
If you have any
thoughts on this poem, Fiona Sinclair would be pleased to hear them.