Trapped by the Undertow by Susan Rouchard

The water beckons; I launch my body into waves.
Below my feet, sharp rocks and sea urchins,
in every nook, glow purple.

Salt coats my arms. I slice through the ocean’s realm.
Rainbow fish gleam, caught in a puddle
of spilling sun rays.

My breath squeezes in, out. Water drapes me.
I face an infinite swell. Muscles become taut,
pluck me back.

I turn my head towards chattering sand, as the beach
shimmers in sky. The undertow’s tentacles grasp
my legs. Deep air catches in my chest.

Tingles burn my fingertips. Darts run down and cramp
my calves. A cry billows in my ribs, shoots
through my lips in silence.

I need to fight this leaden body. Edges seep up unseen
and tease my toes. Wicked urchins poke
at my distress.

A wave breaks, drenches my head, I sputter.
I am pinned down onto a rolling seabed.
I gasp.

At last, my feet find two sandy crannies. I hobble out,
fear still beating like bat wings
between my ears.

About The Author

Susan Baury Rouchard is a Franco-British writer. Her publications to date include a short story, The Rodeo, in Scribble, Park Publications, December 2012; a poem, My Father in my Bones, Paragram Anthology, Remember, December 2014; two further poems, The Piano and Foothold, ORBIS, Summer Issue 2015. She began her writing blog in 2013, where she regularly publishes short stories, poems and extracts from her novel in progress.

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9 responses

  1. susanrouchard

    T‌hank You,

    Best Regards, from Toulouse, France.    

    Susan Baury Rouchard.


  2. stoner on a rollercoaster

    I can feel waves and sand on my bare shoulders. your words sent me in the middle of the tides with you.

    and this part “fear still beating like bat wings
    between my ears.”…

    Now we have words for what fear feels like.



    1. susanrouchard

      Thank you stoneronarollercoaster. Thrilled that you enjoyed it. And we’re able to offer you some new words to express feelings.
      All the best. Susan.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. stoner on a rollercoaster

        You’re welcome 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. #Bandit Fiction, published: Trapped by the Undertow by author Life in Poetry. – Life in Poetry
  4. yvettecarol



    1. susanrouchard

      Thank you Yvette. Wonderful praise.



    You nearly drowned. Very descriptive and suspenseful poem.


    1. susanrouchard

      Thank you Anne for visiting and commenting. All the best. Susan.


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