Swim

Here’s an old poem I wrote. I wrote it for a reading I did last summer and I just came across the old email I used to mail it to myself when I was working on it. Needs some polish. And it doesn’t read on paper as well as it does aloud.

SWIM!
———–

You talkin’ to me? Excuse me?
Quiet! I’ve got guests on my boat.

And what are you doing down there anyway?
Swimming at the Marina is stirictly prohibited except where posted.
(Where is that useless security guy when you need him?)

Quit all that screaming and splashing. You’re distubing the peace.

What? You want help? A hand?

Oh, you’re one of *those* people aren’t you?
Always got your hand out, looking for someone to pull
you out of the fix you’ve gotten yourself into.

Go ahead, swim! Help yourself! Come on!
Put those strong, capable arms of yours to work.

Well, you’re obviously too lazy.
I can’t help you if you won’t help yourself.
I’ll tell you, mister, I worked hard all my life to afford this boat.
I stayed in school at the Y and learned to swim on my own.
Don’t blame society if you didn’t do the same.

Swim already!

If I give you a hand,
I’ll just be hurting you, not helping.
You know that old saying:
“Pull a man from the water, and he’ll live for a day.
Teach a man to swim and…
well, that’s definitely better than a handout!

Swim already!

Oh, so you wan’t one of *my* life vests?
You see that I have four right here
and you think I can spare one, do you?
Well, that’s where it starts.
Then you people will be wanting
your own lifeboats
and 24 hour lifeguards
and special safety rules.
Yeah, you liberals will just tax and regulate
the good life right out from under those of us
who worked hard for the American Dream
that you want handed to you on a platter
without lifting a finger!

What!? Oh, don’t do that bug-eyed, flailing, screaming thing.
You’re just playing on my sympathy.

Okay, tell you what.
Here’s the number of Marina Security,
they have assistance for people in your situation.
I’ll even let you use my cell….

Hey, where’re you going?
Come back up here, I’m talking to you.

Oh, how rude!

Well fine, don’t let me help you!
You should swim on your own anyway.

Copyright 2002 me (as if someone would want to steal this. ha.)

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