At the YMCA Swimming Pool, Summer of ‘94

At the YMCA Swimming Pool, Summer of ‘94

by Stephen Briseño

I am the boy whose flab

causes him to hesitate

when removing his shirt,

spilling scars, stretch marks,

scanning for the pods of other kids

before diving into the deep.

I am the boy whose quiet

disturbs their storms, already

spinning within their chests.

In the shallow end, they wonder

where the shores

of human dignity meet

their waves.

My mother tells me

They are just words.

But words, I have come to learn,

can make summer end early

and winter last for years.

Stephen Briseño is a poet, photographer, and middle school English teacher. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Memoir Mixtapes, 8Poems, formercactus, Riddled with Arrows, and Right Hand Pointing. He lives in San Antonio, TX with his wife and daughter, where you can usually find them lounging at a coffee shop. Follow him on Twitter: @stephen_briseno

Image by elaine, found on Flickr:

#poetry #summersadness #stephenbriseño

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