It had been a long dive looking at whatever wonders the reef afforded her visitors.
“She’s alive, you know.”
So the divemaster/ marine biologist said. “Coral is a living thing. The part we notice, at which we marvel, is but the skeleton, the frame, the architecture.”
We forgot the lecture the minute our eyes turned downward. As we descended to this magic place, our air, our life came from the bottles on our backs. We were just visiting. This could have been Eden, had God preferred fishes, turtles, anemones to pomegranates, tortoises, or bunnies. What would have tempted Eve in this Garden? What proscribed fruit would tempt her in the depths, to bestow wisdom upon her? Maybe sin comes easier on dry land.
We can be awestruck only so long before the scales reencrust our eyes and we return to the show between our ears. But for the moment, we were enlightened in the depth where the sun still cast her rays.
We began the trip home, to limitless air, to food, to wine, to bed. Upward, we swam, our fins propelling us. We had not been down too long, before the air we nursed from from those bottles would betray us at our joints.
We removed the neoprene armour, the glass mask, the aluminum carapace whose contents sustained us in our piscene reverie. We had our time and mortality returned, along with appetite and lust.
After the depths, her body was new to me again. Naked, in the shower, we cavorted, grabbed, suckled, pulled, tweaked. I reclaimed her as mine.
In that night we forgot the lectures, the speeches, the polemics from those we gave our malleable wills. Two became one, in hope there would be three. The same longing possessed by Abraham, by Sarah, in that tent pitched on the gritty earth of Canaan, was ours in that room in that motel.