Monday, July 16, 2012

Boats, Boats, Boats (Camp Deep Creek - July 13 - Week 4)

They rushed down stream, swept away by the icy current of the creek.
Bright paint, feathers and flowers, a central mast and fabric sail making each unique, belonging to a specific child.

The younger children reaching after them, whimpering, not quite understanding: "Hey, Boat, where are you going.  I can't follow." 

The older children kids scampering after them, laughing and screetching, bending and reaching, trying to grab a hold of them before they crash and capsize in the stick jam at the bend.

And we wade in, toes numbing, to reach down and retrieve the doomed vessels.
The boats first loosing their color, then their adornments, and then their sails and masts.
The bright sun is dappled by the trees.  We relish the cool, the shade, the breeze.

Clusters of bruised boats are resting on the bank.
The younger children are gingerly stepping closer to the edge of the water, bending down reaching with one hand and holding on tightly with the other, to pick up rocks and toss them - spash - into the stream.

The older children, now undressed, are splashing in the wide calm pool of water.
And I yelp when a small wet body wraps itself around my legs.

I want time to stand still.
I want the sun, the shade, the breeze, the stream and the trees that our cradling our children in this moment to just - stay.

But we are all rushed down stream and I feel like that boat rushing along, getting caught by sticks and stones, just to be pluck up and sent on the same course again - over and over - loosing color and sail and mast.  On rare occasion, reaching that big, wide, cool pool beyond the deep and treacherous stream jam.  

Two boats ride home with us.
One colorless, but still with mast and sail.  The other a flat piece of wood cradled in my daughters arms.  It no longer has a sail, it has no mast, the colors washed a way a long time ago and all that remains of the lavender fronds that embellished it, is a neat round hole.  She knows that it will sail again.  That we will build it a new mast, a new sail, find new colors, new flowers and let it set sail in different waters.


  1. ...sweet day!! love the pics & the story
    Oma Sherry

  2. Seems a wistful tale, wistfully told, of a timeless day.