My son is in up to his thighs,
trying to muster the courage
to swim to a raft in a mountain lake.
He doesn't see me
watching from the hotel
half-submerged in a hot tub.
I fight the urge to jump up and
race alongside him while I still can.
I'd yell Go Scotty-boy you can do it!
Instead, as I crowd the warm-water
jets with my joints, I pray.
May he get where he wants to go.
Not long after, as the water soothes me,
he raises his arms and dives in,
strong sure strokes toward the float.
© by Kevin Arnold.
Used with the author’s permission.