Submerged

River
The Vermillion River August, 2019

The grass along the riverbank is lush and green. Sunlight bounces off the lake-bound water. The frothing current sweeps past, dark, slate blue. I am far away.

Brownish-purple mud is thick on the soles of my shoes. A stick in my hand, a boulder on my left, I sit. The boulder rocks. My foot falls. Great. My muddy socks and trainers are abandoned with the boulder. I am barefoot.

The shale cliff is in sight. Swallows dart in the air. Red clay squishes between my toes. I hop, jump, splash. A slurry of footprints on sandstone. I am an explorer, a hunter, an animal. I am a swallow. I am here.

The river makes another winding. The shadow of a large bird on the surface then gone. A single purple snail sits undisturbed in the center of a rock. Did you escape? Tap. Tap. Tap. At the river’s edge, tepid water rinses through the snail’s parched shell, then life. The sky dazzles, blue and white. The sun is hot.

My feet inch along slippery limestone. Water twirls around my knees. The river feels good. I go deeper. I reemerge. A great blue heron flies above me then disappears like a windswept spirit. Tiny bubbles rise and pop next to the lucky snail. Fully submerged, it is in no hurry at all.

~

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Thank you for reading. With love always, Kelly