by Amy Wolstenholme

(i)        Kneel

Sharp and edgeless, this submission.
This sky, the shape of it hollow and wanting,
Panting, as if all the light was simply a game,
It had been night underneath, dark underneath,
Poisoned, pounding underneath the skin all along.
The pulse, the beat, the bone blades of the rain,
The needle pocked veins, the life addiction,
The rhythm within, in the ground, in the wings,
The fall and flight of gravity; the dance.
The wait. The shape of the skull bowed in restitution.
The brim of the lake, sharp and edgeless reflection.
You stop. You kneel. You

(ii)      Dive

into familiar water, the taste of baptised flesh,
The reek of open bone, the way life pivots, spins,
Reels between each skin of separation,
Spilling bubbles and leaking muscle.
There is no direction in an underwater autumn,
No self, no surface, only deeper, go deeper, now
Claw at the edge of your perception,
Find yourself hollow and wanting, panting,
You gorgeous paper child, you drifting ocean,

(iii)    Breathe
(iv)    and breathe again

Fall, and emerge, and fight, and fall,
This motion addiction, the duck and dive of you.
The nerve of you, to turn to the mirror and find a world
in brimming eyes and flash of smiling–
–snarling teeth,
Or was it screaming? Arm over arm,
Vacuous cries through concrete lungs, kick after kick–
Or simply motion? Width of the sky, liberty of the ocean,
Depth of the body, of knowing
the rhythm, the flight-fall, the floundering.

Drifting between the dance and the drowning.