At the Water’s Edge

Day 13 of 28 Days of Unreason

“Only the water is safe” – Jim Harrison

It’s the edge that’s frightening
constantly churning
rocks slip under foot
your soles bleed
while you try to trim the sun
and it continues to fry

a washed-up Channel Cat
bones for picking
but he doesn’t say how or why
only that what matters
is the air and wind and landing
when from the precipice you dive.


Lake 7.29.17
Photo – L. Burton


10 comments on “At the Water’s Edge

  1. Intriguing, thought deep about this one, like it, oh and I’d definitely feel safer ‘in’ the water.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. qbit says:

    I like the channel cat image a lot.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Charley says:

    A very interesting take on the prompt. The edge is dangerous… or at the very least, challenging. It hasn’t done the channel cat much in the way of good. Or the bottoms of your feet, for that matter. Better just to find a piece of high ground, a drop-off section, and dive in. Oh, wait! We are talking about water here, aren’t we?!?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. jillys2016 says:

    The photo gives a sense of movement toward the horizon, and I admit, I always look at the photo first. That said, I feel like there is much more going on in this peom than I see at first read or three. The images are crisp, but the deeper meaning remains just out of reach. I need to print it and walk around with it for a bit. I’ll be back…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. jillys2016 says:

    Ok, maybe it was the 3rd cup of coffee… I return to your words and there are a few things that jump out and demand I give them more depth of thought. Trim the sun – like trimming the sails, there is something of getting the angle just so. But all it does is fry that fish, which is a whole other thing. Not just a fish, but a Channel Cat. Channels are paths cut from one place to another, so I get a hint of what I see in the photo; movement toward the horizon. (I’m thinking out loud here – sorry if it’s a ramble.) At first I thought the ‘he’ who doesn’t say was the fish but now I see it as the sun. If it’s the water that is safe, then the air, wind & landing are the dangerous part – the journey / dive into the safety. Ultimately, the fear is at the edge of the jump into something new and BOY, do I get that!

    Liked by 1 person

    • colorfulpen says:

      Thank you for such a thoughtful look at this little piece of mine. I’d hoped I didn’t make it too vague, but you’ve got it. I was thinking the edge is more dangerous, the struggle with self doubt, inner turmoil, taking things on that we can’t control, and deciding which direction to take. The channel cat was also a means of having a new course or way to self discovery. Yes, the fear is at the edge until we finally let go and take that plunge.

      Liked by 1 person

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