Friday, 19 August 2016

by lakewater, in the sunshine

by lakewater, in the sunshine,       
in cedar scented air,
sat a young boy and an ancient
in the land of wolf and bear

on forest breeze in fluttering trees, 
the man told wondrous tales, 
he’d gathered like bright autumn leaves 
to weave into parables

he spoke of good men he had known, 
he spoke of fools he’d met: 
good men tread softly on this earth, 
fools take, all they can get 

by lakewater, in the sunshine,                          
the young boy shared his dream, 
of becoming the best swimmer
that the world has ever seen
the ancient smiled with tenderness 
and stroked his whiskered chin: 
that is a  journey that – my boy – 
may never end … but can begin

you’ll have to train, hard, every day, 
but, heed well, as you go, 
the only one you have to beat 
is you, yourself, you know 

by lakewater in the sunshine, 
whiffle wind on song of birds – 
the woodland spirits’ whispers-waft 
sweet notes upon wise words 

the ancient talked of inner peace: 
the soul’s eternal quest – 
you will know that you’ve succeeded 
when you know you’ve done your best 

there’s no triumph found in cheating 
and a lie is never fun 
but live each day with honesty: 
and all-will-be-well, my son
by lakewater in the sunshine,
in the mystic aqua glow                                
the boy rose, and murmured:  Grandpa,
I’m going to swim, now … watch me go!

photos:  Lake Mesachie (W. Bourke)

Jumpin' In (W. Bourke)
© 2016 Wendy Bourke


  1. :) This brought smile to my face. Very nice.

  2. Children and their dreams....and some of them DO come true! Who knows what this young boy can achieve!

  3. What a great advice for anyone who want to have a dream ... Just do your best and it might go... Love the structure of generations meeting,

  4. What beautifully written, constructed and wise poem this is Wendy. I really enjoyed it.

  5. Such a wonderfully crafted poem.. full of hope and optimism :D

  6. What a magical poem - which feels like a parable being weaved within itself - I love the flow, like gently lapping water. The peaceful sense of learning and acquiring purpose and self.. so many beautiful thoughts and images and the photo at the end made me smile even more

  7. good men tread softly on this earth,
    fools take, all they can get.... so true.

  8. Well the end made me chuckle, enjoyed the rhyme too. Nicely written poem.

  9. Wow! Wow! Wow!
    I wonder if stroking his beard brought forth the magic?
    Fantastic images and this:
    "and stroked his whiskered chin:
    that is a journey that – my boy –
    may never end … but can begin"

  10. Luv your choice to rhyme this tale. made me reflect on The Song of Hiawatha

    much love...

  11. in loving company of the wise is the best gift of life only to be realized in the rhyme...

  12. This is lovely. I saw it all so clearly, and grandpa's message is so wise. Love the small swimmer in the photo. Loved this, Wendy!

  13. I loved this--both perspectives so clear--and so wise

  14. Delicious poem so vivid that I can feel the water and hear the splash.

  15. A lovely story with a timeless feel.

  16. An enchanting and wise poem. Also seems v. fitting with the recent Olympics.

    Love these words:
    "the only one you have to beat
    is you, yourself, you know"

  17. Yes, the scandals involving misconduct at the recent Olympics (particularly the one involving a 12 time Olympic swimming medalist) definitely played into the piece as I was writing.

  18. there is no success without some hard work and dedication, isn't it?
    enjoyed reading this poem. :)

  19. 'you will know that you’ve succeeded
    when you know you’ve done your best' ~ golden words.
    Success - in efforts, not result.So gently woven story. Love it.