The setting sun’s orange glow peeks through the thick canopy above me.
It illuminates the lake’s inky surface and I stand alone at the water’s edge while a cool breeze traces my body and blazes a trail of goosebumps along my skin.

I shiver and shake the mounds flat,

but these tiny tremors reverberate in reverse–
like gravity pushing up and out,
as if someone cast a stone to break through the water’s surface,
creating rings that run from the vortex’s tail and retreat inward instead of spreading themselves wide–
growing to such vasness that they vanish into nothing–

I yearn to become this paradox;
My desire grows as dusk pushes its way across the sky,
pulling a velvet cloak of storm clouds behind it and I remain vigilant
when each article of clothing I remove lands softly against the shore.
I swim to depths where the water can embrace me.
Aquatic plants sway beneath me,
they tickle my bare legs and flex my toes, raise my feet to touch the surface–
I stop to float, to linger below hidden constellations,
and I map myself against a starless sky, surrendering all that I fear.
The heavy burdens I carry slip away from my bare skin,
they sink and search for rock bottom.
The welcome weightlessness repairs my soul
and in this natural state, I synchronize with the Earth’s rotation.