Down Memory Lane

Ode to Clark’s Lake

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Ode to Clark’s Lake

By William Leutz

Again my waking eyes settle on

the water stretching out before me,

a sheet of hammered silver shining in

the fallen light of the second moon of May.

Random patterns of the morning break

coruscate its shifting surface as

they have done since first the creeping ice

carved the shallow hollow of this spring-fed lake.

One hundred years ago, comfortable

in their wicker rocking chairs on the long

shaded porch of the Eagle Point Hotel,

my grandparents also shared this sight.

One hundred years earlier the Potawatomi

in their light, white, birch canoes,

and the wandering, coureur-de-bois engaging

in the fading fur trade, knew it’s light.

In the bitter social banter that serves

for public discourse of the present day,

I wonder who will find this peace

one hundred years from now?

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