The Consolation Splash in Synchronized Swimming
Upshot: the toss up, the tinkle, the toodleloo (what the feet do): (I had to.) You need something to pass through—a continuous pool. The splash bombards our descent with kaleidoscopic patterns in opal—the white embalms with the blue—but is it jewel enough for you if you can’t hold it? I can do the same as you. I can do the same as you. (Smolder underwater.) Held breath is my only bravery. I suck it like a candy while—next in kin to our skin (we are wet within)—the water makes a rag of itself, wipes upward, wipes out, wanton with a suffocating sameness. Ebb and no, ebb and no disembodied flow, the splash tackles air, tickles, dots, attacks in a flutter, ambushing like a moth an old book. Then indelibly, the blotch is dishabille as the dodo. Overdone, then done. But no two tethers are the same. Here we envision the ripple required to enter the lake: Several snakes slinking out, sinking into themselves, shedding skin in a disintegration—finis, fin—they end and a second skin begins, then again. Then again. The serpent recycles as we move further out. You push through: odd-turned, timed. You need a catapult to push through, to get through, to get to the thing. More precisely: prescient susurrations in procedural dance moves. Yesteryear went swimmingly—only lukewarm deformity—but presently we’re doomed. (Read the news.) The routine is monotone yet intoxicated with color like a cartoon fine-tuned to be as bombastic and balloonistic as possible. We need more warmth. We need more mirrors in our limbs that can see and can sing. A buzzer goes off which means to begin. A demolition derby starts zenning in our minds while our bodies, sunning, ache for grace. Everything’s timed. The trick is to come together, not conform. If it clicks, we explode on the crystal surface like the imperfect devotional grandeur of a doodle of a god.