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Lady of the Lake

By Daniella Clarke


In white linen and wallpaper cotton

We are off again

Traversing through the tall grass

Thin, unruly strands that whip against our calves

Making us feel like lice

Crawling through the scalp of the earth.

I am only thirteen 

But your sticky honey smile

And cream paper skin make me

Forget forget forget.

In my mind, I am nineteen

Just like you

And I wear my hair long

mirroring your ringlets;

Your Gemini brother.

When we arrive at the water’s edge

The lake outstretches its silver-flecked limbs

Breathing a sigh.

Small waves thrashing their bodies 

Against one another

Scales slipping against slippery scales

All reflected under the south-west sun.

I cannot look away

As you begin to gently pull at the lace string

That holds your blouse in place

As you untuck the silky fabric from your 

Stiff lavender skirt

As you toss away your straw hat

Reveal your cornflower blue tunic

Looking like a sailor girl.

You are a vision in the May light

Tinted with a rose sheen

My eyes blurring out of focus 

As you descend into the water

With apprehensive feet.

Waist deep

You shimmer as bright as the waves

Laughing your seashell laugh

Which is almost drowned out

By the piano sonata in my head.

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