Touching at the fingertips my hands dart out in front of me through the cool seawater that laps at my bottom lip making it salty. Turning my hands over in opposite directions I pull my arms back toward my sides propelling me through the water, though not as far as I would like. I was never a strong swimmer.As I move slowly toward the horizon, the coastline on either side of me disappears from the corner of each eye and finally I am alone. I let my legs come to rest beneath me and lazily treading water, I tip my head backward. Getting it wet makes me feel cooler for a moment.
I open my mouth slowly. The water touching the top of my bottom lip begins to collect in the gap between my front teeth and moves around the gums making the tongue salty as it rests on the floor of my mouth. A drop runs down my throat stopping somewhere in the chest. I try to hold my breath for a number of seconds but it doesn’t feel right. I extend both arms either side of me, the top of my hands facing skyward and open my mouth to let the water in. There is a lot of noise. After a time it goes black and my head falls forward breaking the surface of the water to face the seabed underneath me and I feel no pain.
Words by SIMON LININGTON