Lake Freezing


Lake Freezing

Earlier, I traveled to Lake Freezing
And dared to stick in my hand
I have heard tales since I was young
Of what the waters there will do to a man:
From the tips of one’s fingers,
The paralysis begins,
Immobilizing the arm up to the shoulder blade
Within seconds, or so they say

I knelt down and took a hard look
At the soft ripples along the surface
Observing fallen leaves and my reflection,
I began to search for the waving of a fish
There was not one, from what I could see
In fact, the only creature I could find
Earlier, in the water of the lake
Was the explorer staring back at me

I extended my arm and felt
The air against my skin
The wintry temperature raised my hairs,
My fingers pointed downward
As my wrist fell fully limp
From my waist, I nudged my arm forward and
Down my hand began to sink
An icy dampness shook my hand
We held there barely long enough to blink

Like a net full of crabs, I hastily withdrew
My hand from the lake
I placed my wet hand in my dry hand
Began investigating whether or not it was awake
Into my palm, my fingers clenched and unclenched;
I could not believe my eyes:
The hand I held was still alive
I raised my fist up to the sky