Beneath the becalmed ocean surface of my body currents roil.
There is nowhere to hide from this crushing undertow–
It grabs hold of me,
pulling me deeper until I fear that I will be lost.
I remember looking out over the waves in Santa Cruz,
my feet kissed by the vestiges of stones and shells worn down by the churn,
my father’s warning heavy in my ear:
the only way forward when you are being pulled under is to let go,
relax the soft animal of your body, embrace the wisdom of the riptide,
let it carry you where it will, where you were always headed.