I see a shadow dancer
a shape in the foam
bobbing up and down.

It has been over an hour
I know the water is cold
he is still swimming,
this stranger,
undeterred.

I glance back down at the book I am reading,
am lost in the printed words
the movie playing in my mind.

When I look up moments later,
he is gone.
Vanished.

When did he leave the beach?
Could it be he has drowned?

I look around briefly,
searching,
before returning to the pages in front of me.
Now uncertain
if he was even ever there at all.

Photo by Conner Murphy on Unsplash