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By Rebecca (Teacher, St John's Grammar, 2019)

I open up my lungs as though
I’ll find my courage in my breath.
My body rocks a little. Breathe in. Breathe out.

The regulator’s slight delay,
A chasm splitting life and death,
Trust and panic. Breathe in. Breathe out.

Remove my mask. The current’s ice
Cold fingers drift across my face
In silent threat. Breathe in. Breathe out.

Replace my mask. The ocean fills
The void. Waiting. Cold. Hungry
For me to fail. Breathe in. Breathe out.

I purge my mask. Once. Twice.
My breath, in which I’ve found my courage,
Repels the sea. Breathe in. Breathe out.