It doesn’t matter how deep or how far
as long as you stay on top of the water.
This is right. No one can help you.
Your body will hold out until it doesn’t.
See the upright ants on the strip of sand:
they are humans. They have lives.
Silver-green water licks your closed lips like a lover.
Take her tongue deeply—a few minutes
of fear—and you can rest.
Who, when, fondled your heart and left it
a bruised peach floating in tepid water.
When it gets blue and cold the mind sharks
come nibbling. Under this rock overhang,
around the craggy point, across the blue
bay and on to the beach after next,
there is a joint in your shoe. You can stand
on the sand and smoke in the breeze
off the water, watch the topless Europeans
with Venus hips and joyless faces tan.
There is the mainland. A person whose face
feels broader and deeper than the Andaman Sea
can be reached by a boat and a taxi
and a bus and a taxi and two planes
and a subway and a short walk. Who needs
God with real people so far away?
Faith, Friend. The water doesn’t want you.
Old coconuts, worn flip flops understand.
The shark is not here. You’ll know when it comes.
Your heart is still beating. I’m here to tell you.