Immersion in the Waters

by | Apr 22, 2014 | Poetry

His car was parked at the court’s mouth.

Mom shouted from the window,

Be careful, her maroon lips distant

buoys off the Atlantic.

It was his turn to take us.


That evening we went to Long beach:

I sat on my father’s lap and drove the jeep,

fast enough to forget my legs

were too short to reach the pedals.

It was June, still cold, but we rolled


our jeans up, raced down the sand bar.

I shot fistfuls of sand at my brother, showed off

my backhand-spring, thrashed

into deep water. He emerged in the darkness

and dragged me out,

carrying me over the dunes like a bride.


Our father was far out on the jetty.

Drenched in seaweed and the thrill

of adventure, we flailed and yelled at him –

We survived! We survived!


But he kept on fishing in his thick rubber boots.

Just another rock, forced against the rest

by the pressure of the tide.



Photo By: webtreats

About The Author

Barbara Schwartz

Barbara Schwartz received her MFA from Sarah Lawrence College in 2006. She currently teaches English at the High School for Environmental Studies in New York City. Her poems have appeared in Nimrod International Journal, 2River Review, Vernacular, and Red River Review.