A young woman, my crush, walks barefoot.
We are in the woods behind the subdivision
we’re she’s lived for years, and I’ve just come to.
It the first warmth of spring, like the sun might stay,
and the flowers are budding, the grass sprouting,
and the leaves coming back, giving modesty to the trees.
She knows a secret place, on a trail she’s worn down
with her feet in hiking boots, or bare in sunny warmth,
the trail to her heart, still pure and free and so very wild.
Over a hill, and down into a grotto and a waterfall,
a deep bowl carved out by the endless waters,
a secret place to swim and baptize yourself in innocence.
She takes off her tank top and cut off shorts,
revealing the swimsuit she wears beneath.
It is blue and white, one piece, summer in color.
I take off my shirt, already wearing my trunks.
She takes my hand in hers and leads me to the water.
The sun is soft. The sky is blue. We are separate from the world.
Our breaths catch in the cold water, and we go under,
into the ancient waters, into the font of unspoiled time,
pure but with blood on it’s claws, free but sharp of tooth.
And we raise above and she is now a mermaid, a spirit
of the unfound places, the dream of which I run towards,
in the emptiness of my days, the darkness of my thoughts.
And she wraps her arms around me and we entwine,
and I stroke her cheek and we kiss, weightless and cold,
and the sun looks away in honor of the moment.
She carries me down to the endless waters,
the stars in the depths, the moon in her melancholy heart,
and this moment will make we with wonder and loss