Posts tagged ‘Fishing’

March 9, 2018

north woods and north shore

i’d like to escape
north woods, northshore
past Duluth, past the ships,
the mini sea
comes into view, comes to mind.
all past-life in the rearview.
empty agendas found blank,
just wake lapping at the shores
where red rocks are shone.
through arched tunnels, further,
Two Harbors, Castle Danger.
a million years in a minute gone by.
how did it happen?
i’d like to escape like lava from crust
to create this Superior lake,
this setting. read it in books as a kid.
the Edmund Fitzgerald and 28.5 barometric pressure.
time’s i can’t take city’s measure.
but these thoughts save me mostly.
nothing but canary lines on the highway: open road.
would go to Lutsen, dad would, drink Hot 100 in a Jacuzzi.
he’s gone too. long gone.
would show the earth’s curve to
flat-earthers to prove them,
as we ate Betty’s pies, or famous pizza,
all the way to Grand Marais.
i don’t know. maybe go
along the snaking Gunflint Trail
to where the road ends, way up there, and
think about finding that square rock
which came into view like some ancient monster on
Lake Sag, i don’t know. Ghosts bobbing in white caps.
still looms in my head when i think
about catching bass or time to put my feet up,
or about my father and what he
would be doing now. i’d escape.
i’d find it. and why not?

May 16, 2016

border waters

coffee muck
where the
at surface
caught wake
came sharp;

lines down
depths to rise
the mystery
from to

we bobbed
at border waters

up and down

July 16, 2015

An Evening in a North Forest

Loam, marrow, stone, and humus—
where open groves of pine bent in sway,
stained-wood new growth,
a green tent setup
and stretched between.

We went tearing, hard traipsing,
gutting fish at a low fire glow
near an old truck.

A sharp knife’s prick in
a valley’s deep expanse—
words far off and then gone;

neighbors chattered, birds chirped,
and the wind whistled
where we breathed in,
adjusted focus, stretched, and pulled.

It was merely coming through,
it was a mere passing chance.

It was an evening in a north forest.

June 11, 2015

you look like you got some sun

One of my favorite phrases to hear on Monday is,
“Oh, you got a bit of sun over the weekend…”
The idea of going outside and sitting in the sun
without buildings, without work, without people,
without being stuck in-doors, without a thing to do,
without being paraded around like a fool at a party,
without the constraints of what society deems correct:
you should wear sunscreen, you should cover up!
you should avoid a sunburn—it will cause cancer!
I have to assume that people die of accidents daily.
You should avoid cigarettes, and expensive scotch,
and domestic beers, and fishing, and jerking off,
and relaxing for no reason, and not doing anything,
and cooking raw red meat, and frying fillets of fish,
and reading a book, or two, and driving an old truck,
and thinking about sexual fantasies, or debauchery.
Yeah, you should probably avoid all of those fun things,
and while you’re at it, make sure to hide from the sun.
Nah. I want to say, “You didn’t get any sun at all?
That’s great, I am sorry to hear you are a shut-in.”
But rather to save some time, I just say, “Yeah.”

June 8, 2015

On Eighth Crow Wing Lake…

a million worlds balanced atop globules
of settled wake and rain, dancing on strung-up
green leathered water lilies in rolling waves.

These beaded reflections, moving,
were a million of you and a million of me;

crystals bouncing with electric light, cosmos lithe,
changing, above tadpole, water beetle, and autumn’s fallen leaves.


No question these microcosms stand in wait,
bobbing on a clear lake,
on each movement thrown within,

contemplating nothing—save for seen,
by those who pass in man-powered vessels,
just a moment in time, taking what they can.


Seagulls carried shadows
above their lives on a lake.

Here, undulating up and down,
and many worlds away.

May 10, 2015

It was Highland in a Nutshell

It was wet cans of PBR from a Coleman cooler
and pulls of Bulleit whisky warm
on a Friday night.

It was green Jalapeño poppers wrapped in fatty bacon
next to glistening short-cut rib rows
in a twilight kitchen.

It was pickup trucks frolicking in rusted skirts
over deep grass fields,
while hunters gathered fungi at the midday shade.

It was alabaster ashes of last evening’s fire
smoldering, becoming ghost stale
near metal pasture gates left wide open.

It was small brown trout caught in cold streams
bleeding, below an Amherst hillside
melting in the last light of a springtime Saturday.

It was Driftless region bluff’s strong straight-wind
carrying Johnny Cash’s “Sunday Morning Coming Down”
into folding valleys asunder from a driver’s side window.

It was a weekend’s mosaic of moments,
laced in and strung up together,
of oscillating seconds and intrinsic perspective.

Oh, it was…

April 26, 2015

Human Beings at Wm O’Brien State Park, MN.

A passenger side ranger inquiry,
lead to fresh blinding light
and splashing potable water.

Campfire embers smoldered
after an evening’s neighborly introduction and proclamation
of “Uptown Pride.”
—We, not so much.

Shown tattoos
and mushrooms,
no room for outside,
where the suburbs subside.

Huddles of families on holiday,
weekend campers on parade;
an International Airstream
sat local in a vast
golden marsh glade.

Yesterday Afternoon.
Pulling from the Bulleit bottle,
to crack a cold and wet brew,
gathering sticks with the best,
for firewood,
for warmth under
the firmament in rolled tents.

Last Night.
Loud bullshit and no possessable fish,
dirty fingernails and a waxing moon paled.
Lagers along a road near the St. Croix river,
walking long lengths pinecone covered trails.

Shoes on jet rocked gravel drive;
smoothed stone,
downed trees,
white smoke,
where the sunrays seeped cutting dried eyes.

Here was Sunday morning,
a question,
packed and coming down
to the sound of classic rock, shutting doors, and moving tires.

How it got away.

February 22, 2015

No Frac, No Question

When our drinking waters have been set aflame,
and we’ve destroyed our pristine rolling bluffs;
the people of the Coulee Region will be ashamed,
while the mining corporations won’t have enough.


No frac,
No question.

August 26, 2014

Fishing near Lanesboro

Fishing near Lanesboro,

More beer than necessary,
one fish smoked, on a vast open field.

Spoken old-timers regale;
trials and tribulations in sar-ca-sm.

Late early last night,
Late morning faded blue-light.

fog that hung
on the fleeting dusk.

Lightening bugs
held within wind gusts.

Crept up slow
as sauntering drunks.

under low hung iron-bridge;
slicked mud and rocks.

Root River below,
life we fish, tied lures with knots.

June 17, 2014

Lock and Dam No. 7

On a boat close an expansive dam
A boy accompanied an Old Man
Fishing for hours cold hands
Only to have come up few clams

The river remained rough
Water spray wet brown splash
Bubbles in the water swirling
Bottom of boat held beer cans

Farther up the boy could see birds
Up close to the tumblers brightly red
Over white-caps exchanged few words
The Old Man palmed his rod in hand

Lock and Dam 7 lent no pension
Yet many prospered in its wake
The Old Man and the boy lay patient
They trolled up and down, but had to wait

Ice coated concrete walls
With rope or hook they fastened tight
Daylight lasted only so long in afternoons
The highway lights suggested night

Untying they came undone
River smell and worms in hand
The fish on the stringer were meager
Pushing off they went towards land

They passed others by and by
Anglers that were mastered
Coming closer to the landing point
Lights on avoiding disaster

Trailing wake in full gait
An out-board went ‘bout 20 knots
Blackness and bugs flew by about them
As they came closer to the docks

Lamplight held empty parking lot
Shown just below the river’s edge
The flat-bottom came parallel the wooden structure
The boy managed at his sea legs

With a hard bump from running in fast
A rope was fastened—quick, and down
The boat made way with the water
The boy made feet with wooden ground

Cold rushed from the river valley out
Nothing held the boy more in life
Than to be out near the Mighty Mississippi
In the dwindling hours of night

As children we are exposed to habits which prove a tradition
As adults we revisit those events to see what lessons were given.