It must have begun with a stare into the crashing water, a different eye than any before, a version of the one that scanned up a cragged rock face before fitting a toe to a horseshoe crevice, drying palms, straining for the next handhold. Or the one who set bladed feet atop a powdered peak, pointed toward the downslope as a slow glide accelerated into a fall.
That’s how it must have been that day on a somewhere beach, the slip of cool grit between the toes not satisfying enough, the breeze seeming to quicken in gust on shore’s edge. Driftwood worn smooth by tidal lapping, musty, slivered in urchin spines. Belly-down paddle through the shallows. Wide-set hammerhead eyes slashing through the deep.
A breath of quiet must have followed--
the water column rises under the makeshift board, the rider stands, balances, as if driven by a sunken instinct surfacing inside. A seismic churn sweeps into surf’s curled mouth, and the rider breaches an unending tunnel, one others would enter, chisel in hand, to chip away the eddying swirls that vanish as soon as they are carved.
-- Bryn Homuth has recent poems published or forthcoming in Jabberwock Review, Chicago Quarterly Review, and Flint Hills Review, among several others. His poem “Bandaging,” which appeared in Ducts.org, was selected as a finalist for the 2013 Best of the Net Anthology. He currently lives with his wife in Minneapolis, MN, and teaches composition for Crown College.