Time on Water by Robert Gibbons

Guarantee Against Panic

The boat could have been going down, but she remained undistracted from the pages of her book. It's strange to feel the ground against a steel hull. It's ominous. The stones I heard sounded hungry. Her mere presence was a guarantee against panic. There is no difference between her serenity & the way a rose or a dahlia respond to the touch of sun turning to solid light & color on the stem of a body. Instead, passengers on board surrounded her with a sheer inscrutable vase cast out of the quandary of their own gaze.

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