Thursday, September 24, 2015
September. At the Lake
In early June the lake is new.
Glaciers on the granite rim melt,
rivulets of ice-clouded water gush
down lime-streaked vertical walls.
It is alpine here
with an awareness of snow in every cloud,
even on brilliant blue warm days.
At dawn, wood smoke rises from chimneys.
Campers awake chilled, don sweaters,
brew coffee, greet the morning, wait
for voices rising up along the trail.
Youngsters arrive to scramble over boulders,
climb the cliffs as a test of themselves,
hesitate, then dare the perilous leap.
They fling themselves airward
and the dark lake swallows them in a bellowing splash
until they emerge, gasping.
Throughout the summer, we make the pilgrimage,
yearning to recapture a dream -
these cabins, cold lemonade at the store,
black and white photographs of a time before the road,
a pristine world that once was, everywhere.
The long, endless days stretch toward autumn.
September. The quiet time.
Nothing left to prove, no need to hurry.
The lake is its own slow clock.
It mirrors leaves glowing gold and red.
Trout rise in spreading circles,
aspens shiver dry and sound like
a memory of rain,
jays and squirrels grow plump,
and one last trickle winds its way
from the peak to the lake
playing brook music on the water.
- Elaine Watkins
(picture from internet)
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