immersion

Go down floating, as if you wouldn’t be sinking. A controlled flight, a sliding away. Slowly. Deeper. No references that you can see, but the suit’s pressure on your skin, but the bubbles of your breathing going away. A device a your wrist telling you that the sun and the air are twenty meters away. Twenty one. Twenty two…

Shadows. Silhouettes under, slowly gaining sharpness. Your guessing, your trying to make sense. Wreck, school of fishes, submerged tree. Shadows. A light in the middle, other divers then. Turn on your own light, exchange the signals. Going down, together now.

The bottom. A darkness that doesn’t becomes lighter when closer. A fluorescent compass, a course to choose and to follow. Back in a world with earth and sky, even when the earth has oysters instead of grass and the sky is thirty meters of water. A regained sense of normality, even when hovering above ground, even when you move with the slightest torsion of your ankles. The beam of your lamp catching reflexes, silver drops moving away, school of small fishes. A eel, then a crayfish, stares at you from one or another hole, ready to retreat at the minor gesture. A pike, slowly cruising above you, curious about these things that you are, too big to be prey and too slow to be a threat.

Shadows, ahead now. The slow sharpening. Have we got to the wreck yet? Already? A big block of pit, unexpected. A sharp slope to follow. Deeper, between more blocks of peat. Inhabited: small plants, smaller shrimps. Less light, twilight at noon. Your lamp as a torch in a primeval forest, you a flying stranger in a world that isn’t yours but still welcomes you. Snaking your way across, believing -if only for the half an hour available- that you are also some sort of fish, some long lost brother that is coming home, coming home.

Coming home with thirty meters of water above you.

A decision postponed for as long as possible. Go up, go away. From the depth, always unexpected, always different, to the places you know. To the moment of turning your lamp off, of leaving the pike behind, the eels, the crayfish. A sunken boat, a line of barrels, a rope leading to a stair. Light and a grey sky. Or blue. Who cares? You are out now, you are back from having visiting home, you are back knowing that you have left home, that you are coming back to some other place. Brighterwarmer. Predictabledirty. Plainer. You a bipedal mammal missing the fins, you the one left behind when that the whales did went back.

You counting down the hours for the next dive.