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ancient amateur

After Reading Abbey, I Go to the Lake

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Swimming in cold lakes should be encouraged.

Not only does it cleanse the body of perfumes

made far away, it saturates you with pond scum

and mud and detritus, and damn

does it feel good. In the water,

you are invincible. You can surface, far

from shore, and let the sun copper-shine

your hair in a jagged halo.

You can slip under the water and commune

with the fish. Those sleek stewards of the lake

taught you how to unzip the current and dive in,

how to gasp in the air and sing under the surface,

and, most importantly, how to swim with your eyes open. 

See, humans like to flutter

their feet and close their eyes, but that hides

the muddled green heaven before you.

Pull your lids wide, I say, 

and drink in the cold and refracted world!

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