Wednesday, May 20, 2015

INTO THE WATER

When I was little and we went as a family to the beach my father would leave us to go on what felt to me an endless swim. I watched him walk down to the water, hitching up the navy blue swimming trunks that my mother, never a craftsperson, had knitted before I was born. The swimming trunks had no elastic and always needed help. I watched my father’s black head of hair advance into the waves, through the crowd of people squealing, jumping and doing normal things, and now he is swimming, purposefully, past everyone, out, in a straight line further and further and further than anyone else even thinks of going, my father, now just a black dot, disappears from us into an expanse of time so long I lose track. He is gone. Until, later in the afternoon, long after I have not forgotten but become absorbed in 100 other things closer at hand, he returns, water streaming, a laugh of pleasure on his face.

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