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My Precious Lake

Published: Jun 05, 2004 - 09:01 PM

By this time next year, I will be living in small town, New Hampshire where the colorful fall foliage is second only to my moody, sometimes tumultuous lake near my home. I live in a quaint little neighborhood tucked into an inconspicuous corner which can be small town, anywhere. The streets are narrow with names such as willow, beech, and silver birch.
They all lead to the lake which is the backdrop for my backyard. And, although I will gain so many things from this move -- as I prepare to make the transition -- I begin to think about the things I will miss of my beloved city. And so begins the long goodbye to those familiar things, including my precious lake.

I live two minutes from the lake and the boardwalk. I like to think of it as my own personal space -- though I share it with a mass population of golden retrievers and many people, also, seeking solitude. The lake is tight-lipped about all the secrets I have given up to it over the years. The lake is my confessional for all things big and small. It knows of my woes and joys of love, life and the whole damn thin -- it is the keeper of my scattered little thoughts. It is where I do my best contemplating. It is where I draw conclusions about this and that.

It is my ritual on weekend mornings -- to bundle up with hat and gloves -- sometimes, digital camera in hand -- and scamper down to the lakefront. Sometimes, it silently shimmers in solitude -- barely making a noticeable ripple or an audible groan, and then there are times when it tosses about angrily, lashing out as if giving up a few secrets of its own; as if purging its belly of the collective secrets of those who have come by and left their soul prints. This morning it is not, particularly, calm or angry, but aware of itself with the strong swishing and swooshing of the tide. I come here to be aware of myself -- as if to confirm my existence.

There are times when I sit on the rocks by the water, and watch the sun in its daily pretense of explosion -- as it refuses to surrender to the night. And it slowly, reluctantly surrenders, slipping over the edge of the earth, and the night takes over, enveloping me in its starry womb. It was on one of those evenings on those very rocks 12 years ago that I allowed myself to believe in my absolute strength and that I am beautiful. It was where I was standing when I had one of those "aha moments" that reminded me that life is meant to be actively pursued--and I should take that leap of faith and broaden my horizons in small town New Hampshire. Those non distinct clusters of rocks are my rock of Gibraltar -- "marking the edge of [my own] world".

This morning, I sit transfixed for what seems like hours as the dry bitter tasting air wraps itself around my lungs cutting my breath -- I feel pain and joy -- asphyxiated by the bare beauty of early morning. I am not there to unload, but to replenish, to regenerate my spirit, to inhale the new morning in its barely there state. This seems possible at my beloved lake. This vast expanse of sky and water that culminates in nothingness draws me in and stamps approval of my authenticity. Today, it soothes my battered spirit from the rigors of the long work week. I sit and let myself be taken into its underbelly, and it listens with tentative ears and answers back without saying a word. It is the perfect relationship.

I will miss my precious lake. My love affair with this particular lake is long-standing. I have been faithful, and it has been there beckoning me to unburden my soul of too many thoughts -- my emotional release -- my throw-away thoughts that sink like rocks to the bottom. My thoughts are scattered along the ocean floor. It holds pieces of me in its belly. It holds those fragile parts for safe keeping. It holds it until you decide to own it -- and sometimes, it holds it because it is the perfect burial ground for those things you want to forget. Those blasted fears and demons sink right to the bottom of the lake if you let them.

Dawn Gale Prince ? 2004. All rights reserved.

Dawn Gale Prince is a freelance writer who is pleased to share her personal voice and simple truth. Articles maybe reprinted with the author?s permission. She may be reached at gurlnts@netscape.net.

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