Beneath the Ice

I am surprised I made it this long 
without hitting the ice above. 
Submerged so deep 
with no hope of a breath. 
No cracks to encourage me 
to bust through, or try.

Maybe I grew a capacity
while I was drowning.
Maybe I can breathe differently now,
so I don’t need to float up,
pressed against the endless cold
as if it will bring me closer to life.

For I am become a creature of the sea,
and there is livingness everywhere I look,
speaking a language I comprehend
somehow, beckoning me to release
my human sheathe at last,
to be a dark, sleek thing,
at home in the deep
until the ice thaws.

Copyright © 2021, S. Naify

Art: Selkies, by Stephanie PuiMun Law, from the Shadowscapes series.

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