Moose Lake- 1960-
I am from skinny- dipping in the dark, gin rummy games in the glow of the kerosene lamp and six cousins up on skis behind the boat
I am from horse flies and fire flies and dragon flies and mosquitoes and the wooden table with the secret drawer
I am from the time a mouse frightened Auntie Margaret in the outdoor biffy and she ran out screaming- her bum as bare as could be
I am from swimming through seaweed, the lake itch, a salt- shaker for the eels, washing and drying dishes, building forts, planting pines, swamping the Pepper and catching frogs
I’m from charades, jig saw puzzles, Monopoly, the sand pile, the tire swing and my nose in a pile of Readers Digest condensed books and old National Geographics
I’m from collecting shells and driftwood at Lake of the Woods, walking to the store for ice-cream and the stranded buck we guided to shore by the antlers
I am from Segne Vater, Komm Herr Jesu, Johnny Appleseed and God is Great before meals, church at the camp on Sunday morning, and the neighbor coming to ask Dad to get the fishhook out of his hand
I’m from coffee and cake at Auntie Selma’s– “walk backwards and sing if you see a bear”- from “swords into ploughshares”- “be happy”- “wear a life jacket” - “let’s go to the north end”– and “it will be better by the time you’re a grandma”
I am from hot nights and canoeing down the path of the full moon, chocolate chip cookies, Dad making eggs to order with bacon, and roasted marshmallows
I am from Grandpa dog paddling and telling us stories of his life as a prisoner and baker in the Russian army- trying to tip the boat in a bout of rebellion, loons calling, gartner snakes writhing, fish jumping and spotting the bald eagle’s nest
Hanging on the wall was the cabin journal adorned with birch bark and berries- stories from a family haven- the one constant place in my life.
Lord You Have Come To the Lakeshore
Wild Flower Inspiration- Moose Lake
My Nephew! My Hero!