Solitary swimmer:
She cuts quiet blue waters with
And stillness ripples outward from
Her ample frame.

Other mothers line poolside
In pairs of chairs and conversation,
Never entering the waters.
She never arrived with another
Save her sunscreened children
Who splashed furiously and recklessly,
Ignoring her savored independence.

She silently followed the black pool floor line
tagging each wall;
Breaststroke, backstroke, butterfly, float.
The only sounds a faint gurgle
Or breath in between strokes
Or a child’s tired sigh.

The sun warmed her head
With the relent late-August brings,
And fresh orange leaves drifted into the pool,
Fluttering onto the surface,
Encouraged by a shift of season
And easy, gentle winds.

She cut through leaves and parted them aside,
Then floated on her back, drifting.
As she emerged up the steps
Her head was covered with a crown
Of wet, yellowed leaves.