Deep End

You went back up to our room to find a towel
and while I waited for you to return,
I bobbed in the deep end of the hotel pool,
watching an old couple kiss in the shallows.

I knew we would never last that long.

Not through decades,
not through crow’s feet and laugh lines,
not through enough for our hands to wrinkle,
no matter how long we submerged
ourselves in each other.

Briefly, I considered swimming over
to ask what secret preserved them,
to ask what I could do to save us from drowning,
but before I got the chance, you came back down
and asked what I was thinking about.

I could think of no explanation,
so I said nothing and I dove to the bottom
and I sat in the deep with my eyes open,
staring up at you staring down
through gallons at me.

This poem was originally published under the pen name Gabriel Gadfly.
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