TO THE WATER’S EDGE

How I long to walk to the water’s edge,
to dip my toes and cool my burning feet.

There are times I think if I could just reach the water
all my pain would wash away.

Where are the days when I skipped along the shore
collecting shells and rocks and starfish?

My body would bake in the brilliant sun as I danced
like a gazelle from one end of the beach to the other. I’d look back
in amazement wondering how I walked that far.

Sometimes I would catch my reflection in the water
and see that young woman, vibrant and alive.

Hair of burnished gold, skin smooth and lustrous,
deeply tanned, and eyes as green as the ocean itself.

I smile at her but she does not smile back. Perhaps
she knows the hurt that lies ahead and is already grieving.

I desperately want to be free from these chains of pain
but the key has long been buried in the sand. I reach for it
but it eludes me.

Where is that young, desirable woman? Where did she go?
If you see her walking by the water’s edge,
please send her home.

I have much to tell her. My heart is strong and my lust for life
and love has not diminished. Only my muscles fail me.

How I long to walk to the water’s edge,
but my tired and failing limbs will not support me.
Oh, how they mock me!

Will someone carry me to the water’s edge?

How I long to walk there once again.

NAR © 2022