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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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