Here I Go

For Jason

         White foam is flying everywhere.  Ivory flecks splash up into my eyes and I can't see.  Oddly enough, the world doesn't go dark -- it is dazzlingly white.  Are my eyes stinging from the chilly water or from tears?  During that instant, I can't see anything.  All is sound and sensation.  The icy water hammers against fingers already painfully numb.  The roar in my ears smothers everything but the slap of foam against my cheeks and the thundering of my heartbeat. I blink to clear the my vision, the tears and foam clinging to my lashes.  For one glorious moment, everything seems calm, and I think that I can do this.  But then another thought intrudes.  I shouldn't be here...He should.  I should be in the Suburban, driving down the incline to the rendezvous point where Jason would soon be climbing out of the water with that exuberant expression and that full-bodied laugh.  "One of these days," he would say.  He wouldn't finish the sentence but we both know what he meant.  He always knew he was the pioneer, the risk-taker.  I was the settler, the one who drove him out and brought him back.  But he isn't here...he can't be.  So I am here in his place.  I shake the water from my eyes and my vision clears.  I see blue sky.  

Then I see the river below me.  

Far away below me.  

Impossibly far away below me.

Here I go, Jason...

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