I know what it is to drown.
Not emotionally, the aching sweet, lyrical deaths
writers and lovers will have you believe in.
I talk of water, and salt
And cold like marble slabs
on which the dead are laid
filling your nose and tongue
and every dark crevice
until you freeze from within
and your skin splits as you expand.
I talk of waves, and foam
so unbelievably strong,
so many million million millions of atoms
pouring down on you like rock.
We were not born with gills
and the purity of water chokes us:
it is lighter than air, and more bright,
of more quality and substance than oxygen.
More gentle and more powerful.
More clear and more dark.
It is where we came from.
I know what it is like to drown
and my desire is to return to the ocean’s womb
the soft heartbeat of the deep.
This time there will be no saviour,
no hand to pluck me out of my foetal dream.
I will cut my gills with this razor
and I will swim.