Diving into the Future
Happy New Year, Up
Bright sunshine and 40 degree weather
made the annual New Year’s Day party and swim
at Barton Springs pool exactly the right way
to begin another year —
Peter and I laugh about whether it’s harder
to get in the water, which is 67 degrees year around,
or to get out, because today the emerald water
is warmer than the air.
Several hundred people mill about, upstairs
sampling food from the pot luck buffet, debating about
whether to eat Roy’s sausages. He represents
developers who are killing the springs.
Colin announces a Silly Diving contest –
and there are actually a few takers, Rainy Day
dives topless, several divers plunge in fully clothed,
tempting the swimming gods who tell us to
change out of wet clothes fast.
Hank Jones stands on the board,
and pounding his chest belts a Tarzan howl –
stops to announce this will be his George Bush dive —
then dives in head first still pounding and yelling.
The winner skate boards off. I swim down to the deep end
noticing how good swimming feels in those few moments
after the shock and before instinct starts telling
me to swim faster or get out of the cold water.
A New Year’s Day like this is nothing short
of spectacular. I drive home vowing to make ‘07
the year of Quan Yin, the goddess of compassion,
Our 2 1/2 year old granddaughter
begins interactions with us lately by saying simply,
Our 2 year old grandson tapped his father
on the shoulder this morning and said —
"Happy New Year, up."
©Susan Bright, 2007
Thanks to Carl Pearson for sending the photos. The woman in the rainbow hat trying to make her camera work is yours truly. Happily real photographers were on site.
Susan Bright is the author of nineteen books of poetry. She is the editor of Plain View Press which since 1975 has published one-hundred-and-fifty books. Her work as a poet, publisher, activist and educator has taken her all over the United States and abroad. Her most recent book, The Layers of Our Seeing, is a collection of poetry, photographs and essays about peace done in collaboration with photographer Alan Pogue and Middle Eastern journalist, Muna Hamzeh.
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