Sink or Swim

By Katie Sarna

If I were to sink or
If I were to swim
Would it really matter?

If I were to sink:
I could peacefully float down, drifting to the bottom of the ocean
Staring back up at those flailing above me so desperately
Those who hold on to the thought of reward, of success
I might feel an ache in my chest, a straining lack of air, but
I could watch the slants of broken sunlight
Filtering in as far as they could reach in the dark water
Until I sunk into tranquil darkness
Where no light ever dared to venture.

If I were to swim:
I would cough and splutter as waves battered my face
Without mercy, the salt stinging my lungs
Shapes me into a burning underwater fire
Making it hard to keep going, hard to breathe
And the thought of something, be it an island
Or a rescue helicopter, or those I was competing with
Would it keep me going?
Or would I
have already drowned?

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