First Day

Sluggish, brown waters

flow by lazily

A rickety, rotten dock

shifts with every step

An old, carbon fiber boat

pressing weight into shoulders

Seven new girls surrounding

teammates and friends to be

One new girl yelling

unfamiliar calls

One new coach supporting

guiding movements

One new sport

the best choice made

Bow Pair Out

I sit back

at rest

at ease

the oar tucked

and fingers curled

around cold, wet steel

I can see those ahead

even if I can't hear

I get the gist

Two shifts in her seat

grip changes

back straightens

and I follow her lead

in two

one two

bow pair in

As one, bow pair begins

to move

with stern four

arms only – ten strokes

arms and body – ten strokes

half slide – ten strokes

full slide – ten strokes

And repeat – two more times

Discipline Focus

in two

one two

bow pair out

I sit back

at rest

at ease

the oar tucked

and fingers curled

around cold, wet steel

and I think:

Best choice I've made