A cold, drizzly Saturday

I woke early this morning, Saturday, November 03, to try to catch the colors of sunrise reflecting on the lake. Unfortunately, the rain and fog thwarted my plan, so I arrived to my favorite patch of beach in a hazy dawn. I heard a songbird as I neared my spot, pedaling along the bike path. I was shocked to see that the trees were almost completely barren. The one Cedar still held his flat, green needles, but the Cottonwood, Dogwood, Silver Maple, Elm, Ash, and Black Willow merely clung to brown, dead leaves, if any at all. I immediately noticed that all of the trash that had once littered the place was gone, and I’m grateful to whichever Good Samaritan picked it all up. As I sat on a log by one of the fire pits, clinging to my mason jar of warm water through gloved hands, a duck settled down into the shallow water. He was a male (had a green head), and was alone. He honked his horn twice, dunked his head in the water once, honked again, and flew off. As he flew away, I noticed the persistent cry of a gull. A few minutes later, a pair of ducks – one male, one female, settled down in the same place the first had been. These two didn’t make a sound, and swam around for a few minutes before doing anything seemingly productive. Then they started what seemed to be breakfast. Not making a sound, they repeatedly dunked their heads in the shallow water, feasting on what I hope was a satisfying morning meal. They were still chowing down when I finished my hot water, and the combination of cold and wet became too much for me, so I climbed back onto my bike and headed to campus, excited to have some breakfast of my own. As I did so, a crow squawked and flew out of the Elm tree above me.

When I could swim

If I let my vision go

The November rain seems to fade.

I can almost feel the sweet embrace

As ripples of energy caress the shore.

Woosh, Shhh, Woosh, Shh,

In, out, in, out.

It is September,

And there is no hood over my head.

Goggles cover my eyes,

And the water that enters my mouth

Tastes like leaves,

As I smile at a fish who swims along by.

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