I am not cold.
Instead, the hazel clouds that rise up
and settle down again, brush against my skin
like the fuzzy inside of a winter jacket.
I look up and the world is covered
with a plastic wrap,
the kind you put over unfinished meals,
and only the leftover sounds of a crying gull
make it to my eardrums so that all I can hear
are the dull thumps that drown and drown and drown
out the pounding in my head.
The aches on both sides of my chest burn
like the loss of a loved one,
the flames smothered at first,
but the embers there,
until all at once,
then I burst free from the water
and it hurts like after a hard day’s work,
drawing in breath after breath,
thirsty for a drink.
I am surprised at the wetness on my skin.