Swimming Lessons

Swimming Lessons

Panic, run, try to escape,

slipping, getting nowhere, slow motion through liquid


The familiar helplessness, overwhelming,

screaming, struggling, to no avail.

That vice like grip, I am small and weak by comparison,

his big hands carry me into the water, to a horrible depth.

The water changes colour, deeper and darker,

a deep green void, from which there is no return.

I am lifted above dad’s head, terrified, I know what’s


I can hear laughter behind the screams, my screams.

Resistance is pointless, I continue to struggle,

I am thrown, enveloped in horror, swallowed by the


Staggering up the beach to safety, ankle deep,

I can’t remember how I made it to shore.

I am shaken, embarrassed, angry,

the beach was no fun for me in those days.

Go home, soon forgotten in a blur of childhood


Great, all in the car, another family adventure,


Going to visit Grandma and Grandpa, they live at the


Panic, run, …

Alan  Friday

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