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The Diving Board

It’s taunted you all summer

Like a tongue out at your back

Yet little kids jump off all day

So many you’ve lost track

You don’t know why it’s scary

‘Cause it’s really not that high

And there’s blue water at the base

No reason you can’t try

But man, when you get on it

And tip toe to its edge

It’s higher than a skyscraper

You feel pushed to the ledge

Inside you want to conquer it

You’ve talked yourself to death

And yet you can’t quite make legs work

It feels beyond your depth

But you have sworn this summer

That you’ll conquer all your fears

And jumping off that diving board

Is one you’ve ducked for years

You take deep breath and climb the stair

Each rung a bitter pill

And when you reach the platform top

It’s like the world’s stood still

You baby-step as slow can be

You try not looking down

Your heart is beating like a drum

Convinced you’re gonna drown

But still you creep up to the end

Your fists are clenched with grit

You close your eyes and ears to fear

This time you’re doing it!

You catch your breath and hold it tight

You’ll soon have feat to boast

And then you freefall into space

The thing you’ve dreaded most

You’d truly scream if you had air

You think your bones will break

It feels like an eternity

Yet seconds are all it takes

The water swallows you up whole

You plunge right to the bottom

Head attached, your limbs intact

You’re grateful you’ve still got ‘em!

You break the surface of the pool

To cheers from all your friends

Instantly you swell with pride

Your fight with doubt now ends

It’s moments like that leap of faith

That make us who we are

Are we someone dark with angst?

Or shines like shooting stars?

All of us have stumbling blocks

Just like that diving board

And if we learn to face our fears

Self-worth be our reward!

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