Sea Turtle Tour Guide This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

March 6, 2013
The first time I took that plunge
off the side of that weathered and washed-out
wooden skiff painted a faded blue,
and into the crystal clear waters,
I parted ways with the world
I've become so accustomed to
Instantly I sank, such an awkward sight,
flopping about, gaining my bearing
As the ocean consumed me
flooding my senses
these eerie silent sounds
were all I was hearing
A cavalcade of color
exploded before me
as that salty ocean taste
crept in through the gaps
where my lips met with
the snorkel attached
to my mask that
gave a magnificent view
as I hovered just below
the surface of the sea,
teetering on the gateway
between real life above
and this submerged world
of wonder and make-believe

I broke from my trance and
explored my surroundings.
Underwater outcroppings sat so
upon a white sandy bottom
carved from rock and salt
where an abundance of
life stretched on and on
Vivid yellow brain corals
as bright as the sun
and soft as my bed
seemed so much brighter
than the ones in our heads
and great violet fan corals
swayed with the current
as well as the fire coral.
I kept my distance
as its poisonous sting
was a definite deterrent
And if these underwater plants
represented a city
as bright as the stars,
then the plethora of fish
would serve as the cars
and trucks and buses and trains
that maneuvered their way
through bustling lanes
of this oceanic traverse

And out of the distance
A lone creature approached,
hard shell on top
and a beak for a snout
He circled about
as if saying “Come,
follow me, I'll show you around!”
I followed my new friend
as he gave me a tour of his world,
His stamina not fading
he'd turn his head and look behind
to check if I was still following
and all that we saw waved
with the sea.
The fan corals;
the sea grass;
the parrot fish;
and my sea turtle tour guide …well, … waving
as if to say, “Welcome home, friend,
we've been waiting.”

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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