The Sea Poem

by Susan Carr

The sea brooding like a restless thief,

bemoaning fate,

taking what it can from life then

letting it go

like a thousand knives

with waves oily and dark pitching over and over.

Swimmers swim in great numbers and the only sound

that can be heard 

is whoosh, whoosh, whoosh.

It is

the thud of arms and legs 


through the angry water,

mouths turning to spit 

like one large organism submerging into the depths

only to 

come up for air.

Breath becomes labored grunts and


It is

the sound of lovemaking to the vastness that is everywhere,

a kind of painful birth 

beneath thrashing waves.

Some fall away under the waves, their bony fingers

barely visible reaching, reaching,

trying to hold onto a leg or an arm

then letting go to embrace the swell.

Other swimmers swim on through cold nights black as slate

and strange daylights dressed in orange and brown.

Swimming is what is required now,

elbows and feet,

hair and nails all grown long,

skin withered and puckered forming tiny scales.

Instinctually the swimmers move forward for perhaps one year

or two thousand,

and slowly a lost sun gives birth to a strange dawn

tentatively rising over the sea, 

the glint of gold

then gold fanning out everywhere.

Over the sea this gold blinds,

so radiantly glowing far off in leaves of trees that dip over the water

very far off

on an island of electric green with a carpet of soft pliant grass.

Tiny flecks of gold pollen on water, gold in the air.

The swimmers stop swimming and let out a collective ahhhh

treading water for the first time, realizing their destination

becoming individual once more.

Some have already reached the shore drawing in the sand


their name.

Susan Carr is a mother and grandmother. She is also painter, sculptor, writer and photographer who graduated from Tufts University and The School of The Museum of Fine Arts Boston 2003. Susan just published a small book with rawmeat press called “Tensions” dealing with addiction in family systems. It was centered around her sons recent death and the issues in her family. Susan Carr is very active on Instagram @susancarr88