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The Boating Lake - A Poem
During the summer of 2013 I worked on a project called poets in places. The theme for the project was water.
A group of poets in my area, including me, picked an inspirational spot from our town that had a body of water. Then, in the month of September we all got together at a local gallery and spoke about our inspirations, our methods of working and finally, we read our poem.
As part of the project I took photos (which unfortunately I no longer have to share with you) and painted pictures, and I spent a lot of time in my area choice.
The place I chose was The Boating Lake which is just as it sounds, a lake with boats in it. I wrote about this spot because it is where I have spent a lot of time with friends, and where I first got together with my current partner. At the time of working on the project, this was still a very recent event, and so I was feeling rather romantic.
A few days ago was our first anniversary, so what better time than to share this poem with you.
I hope you enjoy.
The Boating Lake
It's a place of beauty, the old boating lake,
With swans and geese and a shop that sells cake.
So we wander the path that takes us round the lakeside
As the sun bounces from the water, makes the whole place shine
With a brilliant light highlighting the blues and the greens,
The water in the lake and the leaves on the trees.
We sit on a hill under the shade of a tree
And I watch as the image unfolds before me.
It's amazing, the wonder of the warm summer's air
That clings on through winter, somehow always there
With the hope and the promise that in a matter of time
The spring will come back with the turn of the tide.
In fact the tide's just behind us, its sweet salt we can smell,
It lulls in time with our breathing, a lifetime of stories to tell.
Of lovers, or brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, daughters, granddaughters and sons,
Of love and of fortune, of happiness and care,
Of those left at home who wished they were there.
Well, we're lucky to be here in this place in this time
Not knowing what's ahead of us, just going with the tide.
But no matter when I sit here: autumn, winter, spring
I will always think of summer and the memory it brings.
When we emerged from the arcades and walked along the prom side
And swapped stories of misfortune and watched the tide.
And we reached the lake and ducks asked us for bread
But we carried on walking, kept going straight ahead
Until we reached this same spot under the shade of a tree,
We felt at home, we felt safe, it was the best place to be.
And as we sat together in the peace and the quiet,
Some schoolboys approached in search of a riot.
But we simply continued without making a fuss,
Whatever they said wouldn't get to us.
So we showed them the beauty of the place where we sat,
All the tiny details down to one blade of grass.
We picked up a flower and showed them a trick they could do,
They left happy that day having learned something new.
We stood up together as we laughed and agreed
That we'll come back with the seasons so that we can see
How everything changes yet still stays the same,
And together we'll watch it come back round again.
So here we are again, sat by the lakeside,
As the sun bounces from the water, makes the whole place shine.
But this time reflecting a more orange glow
As the trees shed their leaves to prepare for the snow.
And as the sun hangs low we realise it's time
For us to go home before it turns night.
So we face each other as we say our goodbyes,
But this isn't the end, rather the start, of the turn of the tide.
© 2014 Amy Naylor