Friday, August 1, 2008

Fishing the Creek

In my youth I learned to fish in creeks. My great granny Tish was a master at finding the darkest holes on the creek. This usually meant the most overgrown too. Her old collie dog had been bitten by water moccasins so many times he was virtually immune to the venom. She wore dark colored clothing and a sun bonnet on these fishing expeditions, and if you had on anything light colored you couldn't go. She said the fish could see you and it would scare them off. She carried a short cane pole and a syrup bucket with earth worms in it. As I grew older, I too learned to look for those places where the water was deeper and provided cover for the fish. The short pole was easier to maneuver in those tight places where the tree limbs grew out over the water. Bream, Goggleye, White Perch, and Catfish were the main fish one might expect to catch. I decided to write a poem to try and capture the feel of fishing on the creek.

The Catch

I used to take a short cane pole
and head out for the creek
where tannin colored water ran
like iced tea over white soft sand.
It pooled in bends or near felled
trees in deep black holes where
fishes hid.
With weight and hook and wiggling worm
I’d drop my line and watch the
slender bobber move along in
current like a silent periscope
until it disappeared as some finned denizen
took flight with bait in mouth
before he felt the hook and my swift tug
to bring him upward from the depths.

The future is much like the present, only longer. - Dan Quisenberry