All of us swim here with Dad
in the winter, when the ground is too bright
outside and Morses Pond packs
itself in storage. The wind becomes a cold dog
that licks our hands and noses.
The drive here is an adventure
we don’t understand.
But inside is all splashing
and old people. A voice commands
from a wall-speaker every few minutes
and tells Dad what to do with us.
The building goes on for hours.
There are bridges
and trees that grow straight up
from cement, and it could take us days
Dad comes out from the locker room
with swim-trunks fresh
from the cyclone machine
he says I can’t use
until I am at least eight.
He leads us out like a king
leads his children from the baths
and we can’t figure
why other people don’t move
for him or nod
to the only man
who can bring his children back
to the rest of the world.