He settled like the tide, then sank eventually, floating aimlessly and softly, not at all like a log but languishing and plump, a white witness to the darkness.

After the first spike of pain and the panic there was a settling sense of inevitability, the body pitted against itself, both longing for breath and at the same time snuffing it with each gulping inhalation of the frigid, pungent water. The first swallow tore against his lungs but successive ones softened them and made him heavy. Soon he was beyond panic.

There was a pinging echo as if someone hammered against a nearly empty air tank with a wrench.

A sense of someone swimming nearby in dark water.

A woman came to visit him bearing a garland of dried vines strung with flowers of various shades of blue and a few stray blossoms of pink and yellow. She sang a strange song of a Portuguese sailor and a witch. Above him water lilies floated like green clouds. They were tethered to the muck on swaying cords of soft green. Another girl signed his name over the water, singing as she formed the letters.