A poem by Judy Stevens
If you live on a lake,
it becomes a friend, and eventually
family. You learn its language, know its rhythms
share its daily anticipation
as sunrise illuminates
another dawn’s unforeseen comings
Like you, on occasion it can be cruel.
Mostly, though, it’s generous – a wet welcome mat
that turns the other cheek
every time the wind changes direction.
On a clear day, ripples sparkling,
its glee is catching, as you well know,
and thank goodness you have caught it many a time.
When a curtain of rain draws across its wide girth,
its jitters send you running to close
It flexes powerful muscles during a thunderstorm, while
you, transfixed on the porch, wait
for the long, throbbing fingers of lightning
to poke its churned-up water.
And during a hurricane? Alarming fury is unleashed.
It morphs into a crazed alien,
frothing at the mouth and trashing
its own shore.
On a dark night it keeps your deepest secrets,
yet under the light of a full moon becomes
a suitor wearing black silk.
It can sow gloom on a grey day if you let it.
But on a calm day at sunset, it smooths
the warm butter of serenity
into your hard crust.