I bobble up and down like
slender ice cubes and rough, red-stained corks
in the black waters of my personal sea.
Is the water ink black like the hollowed
sockets of an empty skull? ―or
are my eyes squeezed shut, pressed together like
white linen between iron and board?
Lungs filling with murk and debris,
the whites of my eyes reflecting the darkening clouds
Something brushes past my leg, and
surfacing, yawns with its
unhinged jaw, rows and rows and rows of glassy
teeth gleaming though the Sun has fallen into its daily slumber.
This thing, with its swinging jaw and snaking body
that’s encircling my torso,
whispers to me you were never truly alone.
And now I’m certain my eyes were open,
because the water rushes into them, bloating
my body with its tendrils, as I sink
beneath the deepening shoals.
Riley Hines is a graduating senior at the University of Alabama. She loves all things fantasy, but is also drawn to horrific themes that make one’s skin crawl. Two of her poems can be found in Issue 30 of the Marr’s Field Journal.