I skipped off the dock
like a flat-iron rock flung into the bay,
a grand jeté on the waves.
There was no splash.
There wasn’t even a splish.
I slipped into watery pantyhose,
the slick silver shark of Bigfork, Montana.
Under my cutting gills, entombed in my air-womb,
a terrible oxygen crept to my fingernails,
which sliced through the snake-green slime
that consummated with waterlogged wood.
I deflated my balloon body down the ladder
until my spider hair canoodled the sand,
and I shimmied under the dock’s bottom
like a crab on a bad day.
Freshwater champagne bubbles raced me
to the air pocket under the marina.
My tongue split the surface,
and a childhood fear dripped down my tail
like the water drops from the wet feet
that marched above my elastic-wrapped head.
Sticking my fingers through whistle-gray planks,
sinking their algae-curled tips into blush-baked flesh,
I grew butter-knife fins and penny scales
and never walked again