Under what circumstances

April 27, 2009
By B.t. Cole SILVER, Chicago, Illinois
B.t. Cole SILVER, Chicago, Illinois
7 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Under what circumstance would someone think about the dentist in a pool?

At 11:23 I am dipping my toes in the water. At noon I am drowning. At eleven I am walking into the pool room. It is quiet and I can hear the slight sways of the water. The room is pale and white and reminds me of the dentist’s office. A rack of meticulously folded towels greets the entrance, followed by a row of twenty striped folding chairs. The chairs are long and folded into the position of most comfort for the perfectly average person. I walk past the chairs and see the pool. At 11:23 I am dipping my toes in the water but at 11:07 I am just looking at my reflection in the water. My face contorts in the reflection and I turn my head to the left. I walk back to the chairs and lay my towel over the middle chair. It is 11:15 and I am waiting for my cousin. It is 9:13 and he makes a promise but now it is 11:18 and he is still absent. I pull at my towel and my legs become restless. At noon they don’t stop flailing. I stand up and I go to the water, I lift my feet, spread my toes, and it is 11:23. By the next minute I am submerged.
At 11:23 I am in the water and by 11: 46 I am out. It’s only 11:27 so I am swimming. At this moment I still want to be a swimmer but my mother tells me that my asthma won’t take it. She’s not here though; she’s not even in the state so I can pretend. Pretend I’ m being watched, pretend my grace is respected, pretend at seven years of age I am the youngest Olympian but at 11:41 I am tired on the water and I see that I am eight feet in. At 11:42 I swim back and out to my towel. It is 11:48 and I am sitting by the warmth of the jacuzzi wishing I was back In the pool. At 11:50 I walk back to my towel and I pick it up, and at 11:52 I see the 15 feet marker. I am an Olympian at 11:27 and a man 11:54. It is 11:07 and my face is contorting.
It is 11:58 and I notice the clock in the middle of the room but in a moment it disappears. The chlorine begins to sting my eyes and I remember when I dipped my toes in the water. However I don’t know if I am dipping them in now or if I did it last week. The spaces in my mind start to fill together. I am gasping and trying to remember, to remember what to remember. It is all falling to pieces and my eyes start to water. I am not sad, I am not happy, I starting to not care, I am starting to forget and at noon I am drowning. Not just my lungs are crippling but my mind. They are all twisting together and I mistake my hands for my lips. It is 11:42 and I am escaping but it is also noon and I am drowning. I am crawling and watching the towels, thinking about dentists, watching my face, removing the clock. And suddenly, it is 11:15 and I am waiting.

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