Loyle Carner spends a lot of time on my rotation while I’m forging. This excerpt he included on his latest album is quite poignant for me. Reach out. Make sure that you can be there for someone who is “not waving, but drowning.”
I read about a man getting drowned once.
His friends thought he was waving to them from the sea but really, he was drowning.
And then I thought that, in a way, it is true of life too.
That a lot of people pretend, out of bravery really.
That they are very jolly and ordinary sort of chaps.
But really they do not feel at home at all in the world.
Or able to make friends easily.
So then they joke a lot and laugh.
And people think they’re quite alright and jolly nice too.
But sometimes that brave pretense breaks down.
And then, like the poor man in this poem, they are lost.
Not waving, but drowning.
- Stevie Smith on her poem “Not Waving, But Drowning.”