Drowning Still

The waters rise, as they always do.
Here, beneath the fierce and murky waves,
Lies a white figure; her porcelain chipped and ice cold
In ways which no blanket could hope to combat.

She fell here, into the water,
And made the soft lake grass her bed.
She twined weeds and fine fishing line through long dark-chocolate hair,
Hoarded the bottle caps, any small treasures, that the current would deign push at her.

Surviving among little silver fish, breathing in the foul damp of the bay,
She had trouble remembering a life before this.
That she could exist without her lungs needing to gasp water.
Slumber became a rare and welcome escape from the spiraling sadness,
When her tattered white dress would billow and thrash with her throes like spume.

The dark waters- frigid, crushing blackness everywhere around her-
Were almost comforting in their familiarity.
The torment of the crashing waves and whirlpools and violent high tide
A relentless onslaught;
No different than the hands who delivered her to the lake in the first place.

In the first place, when it happened . . .
It should have been a lovely day to skip stones across the surface,
To watch the hazy fog levitate over a glass-still lake and hear the wind sigh through the reeds.
But she fell, here, into the water.

She was not frightened when she went under,
When she fell or dove or perhaps was pushed.
Perhaps was dragged by her seaweed-dark hair and drowned.
Suffocating was normalcy, was it not?
For Maastricht blue waters are nothing fearsome to one so accustomed to feeling lifeless.

“We ache like children trapped within a hollow home,”
She whispers to herself, alone in the twilight deep.
Sitting on dry land, red rust in a run-down room,
Alone and drowning still.