Your Depression

On the shore
the sand sticks to me like flecks of gold.

I must shine
as the sun is warm on my back,
and the water is still dripping from my skin.

I call to you,
you in the lake,
as you struggle and flail.

"It's only a little way."
I say.
"It's not as deep as you think."
I say.

I who must shine
as the sun is warm on my back,
and the water is still dripping from my skin.

You almost
sink. "Help," you say.
"Help."

But I remember the boat,
how I held out my hand,
how you pushed it away again and again and again.

And when I finally jumped in,
how cold the deep was, shockingly dark—
I couldn't find my feet,
at first. It pulled down.

"Help," you said then too,
and I tried. But you were worse than the lake,
the way you fought in your panic,
your arms and legs wrapped around me worse than
the weeds that tie in place. You pushed me under.
I broke free.

I who must shine
as the sun is warm on my back,
and the water is still dripping from my skin.

"It's only a little way."
I say.
"It's not as deep as you think."
I say.

You almost sink.

"It's only a little way and you can stand,"
I say.

I must shine.
The sun behind me is hot.
A flash across the surface and you see me.
And you swim.
And you stand.
You stop.

I shout, "No."
But you stop
to stare at your reflection
as you did in the boat before you fell in.
It's not right, it's choppy," you say.

The air is cool on my back and the sun is sinking.
My skin is covered in sand.
It doesn't shine.

But I do. I do. And I walk away from the lake, from the water, from you.

You can follow me if you want.