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Please begin with an informative title:

A boat is where I feel most alive.
The firm pull of the blades,
the tholes creak,
the chop slaps the hull
while my palms taste the oar handles.

She is wood and aluminum
pea green and tarnished silver.
My Missus and the little white dog perch in the stern.
The sun pings the ripples
and pierces down into the blackness.
I pull with the soft breeze abeam.

Near the mouth of the creek,
boulders lurk to bite oar tips and break props.
Missus guides me off their dark granite heads.
A strand of weed catches the oar
as we glide past the fallen logs,
the lily pads, and horsetail reeds.

My blood courses,
with the sun and the wind
and the pulse of the water,
sucking at the oars.
In a moment I am a sun-burnt child again.

Only three of us gliding over the black water,
plenty of room to stretch and pull
but the boat is nonetheless crowded.
The family who brought me here,
Aunt Theresa, Uncle Al, Uncle Jake
Dozens of cousins and fistfuls of sisters and brothers
splash and laugh and argue.

They dive from the boat
and climb back in.
They are trailing behind on inner tubes,
waving from the shore,
and listening to loons under a pink, golden sky.
Uncle Tony wades with his fly rod.
The popper on the end of his line
punctuates the sweeps in the twilight.

Intro

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Originally posted to ruleoflaw on Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 04:53 PM PDT.

Also republished by Badger State Progressive, Rebel Songwriters, Kitchen Table Kibitzing, and J Town.

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