Summer Poem – The Lake

Summer Poem – The Lake

The Lake is a summer poem, a celebration of warm summer days spent together outside.

The Lake – Summer Poem

All year the dripping sky plunged into the dip
In the landscape; light and crystalline 
Rain had partied there, sketched in by wintering winds.
All year it swelled inside the deep cavity.
Drops clattered like seashells, water poppies
Sloshed veils of yellow rays across the lake. 
You could spot purple mosquitos and blue dragonflies
From the wooden rowing boat we had fixed up 
Out of scraps one warm day the rain wouldn’t let up
In the middle of our summering. Once afloat,
We would sky an oar and each stroke into the deep
Rippled a fish and rocked a water lily.
Within the crutches, the rudders nestled we were
Hanging off the beaks of birds inside the mould 
On the thwart. They would tell us how it is
To fly for miles and miles and how plumes want 
Springing when the long nights floor the early bright. We 
Could tell the shore was listening even adrift down-lake it 
Framed the water and the fields beyond and on it
We’d lodge our boat for the next day

                  until the day, dusk weighed anchor at dawn.  
Now the clouds were fumettos and 
The lake was a pop-up book with us in it, the sun 
A giant reading lamp. We heard how the sand had 
Beached a fish and stuck on so that the angler threw it 
Back in and how the bird considered snapping it up 
Mid-air only to be nudged out of the way by the breeze 
And how what we said nursed the ladybug many miles 
Away. On the whitecaps, a grey heron pencilled 
A map for the catfish and us as far as the slough and 
Through the cattails and the floating sweet grass of 
The moor and beyond to where we’d dry off before 
Going home for iced tea with a slice of lemon. Soon,
We’d be falling then wintering before budding and 
Summering again.

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