Childhood Phosphenes: Hands and Water

I am a child.

My head shoved into the water.

I thought I’d never get out, be released,

From the pressure

Of her hands,

Her laughter,

Whilst I needed to come up for air and life.

Her weight on my body,

Her timing so bad,

She failed to see me struggling,

I wanted to use my force

To make my agony as blatant as possible,

And she shoved and shoved.

I have respected water ever since,

The enormity, the calibre, that it can swallow me whole.

I made it to the surface.

My heart too.


“Portrait of the Duchesse de Châteauroux as Thalia, Muse of Comedy” by Jean-Marc Nattier (1685-1766)

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