Bards of the Lake

Poetry sharing among the Lake Cane community

Tom's Poetry Contest Rules

1. Keep your toe in the water (Try to make a connection with something aquatic)

2. Keep it on a calendar page (Shoot for something between a Haiku and a Sonnet)

Submit Your Own Poem Here

Authors have a chance to win a $50 prize!

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April 2020 Poetry Submissions

Whose lake this is . . .

Mar 23, 2020

By Michael Zahn

“The individual property owners whose holdings surround Lake Cane have vested property rights in the lake itself” — quote from “Water Rights in Florida”

Whose lake this is, I think I know:
The residents that swim below
or ride the pulsing winds that blow
and stir the waves where others ride
and rustle weeds where sly ones lurk
(and shy ones hide)

Whose lake this is, I think I know —
we see their spoor
and hear their caws and croaks,
their screeches, hoots and grunts and growls,
their pants and burps and barks and howls
(beware their hisses and their snarls)

Whose lake this is, I think I know:
Creatures who possess no title,
no paper trail, no deed on file.
Though the lake’s their domicile,
they cannot claim their rights at trial.
They cannot swear an oath
in court of law
by raising fin or wing or paw.
Their testimony goes unheard
for lack of speech, for lack of word
while progress ever shrinks their world.
Admit it! They’re the rightful heirs!
Their stake should be no mystery:
their presence throughout history.
(But lawyers wearing fancy shoes
won’t take clients that pee and poop
wherever they choose)

Whose lake this is, let’s all agree —
it isn’t you, it isn’t me.
We all share its biology
with organisms great and small.
And yet we’ve used it as our own,
a playground — and a garbage dump.
Swimmers and boaters remain enticed
while our fertilizers stifle life.
Pesticides and herbicides and runoff, too —
we’ve filled the water with such goo!
The beasts of water, air and earth
are begging us for its rebirth.
We humans are the curse of Cane
and also its redemption.
(We can make it right again
for mutual salvation!)

Read Poem

February 2020 Awards

Our February 2020 Winner: Laura Cole!

Lake Of The Cane

By Laura Cole

Foul monsters and zombies do lie down beneath
But give you no mind dear, ‘tis all but a tease
The depths, the abyss, what is down in the deep?
Do come now, step in now, we’ll put you at ease

So sheepish step I, to that watery bog
My breath is now fainting, my legs are like logs
Swam I to the take, the return to the dock
But shadow, I glimpsed it, my heart it did pause!

What horrors! My mind shrieked, so quickened my pace
How foolish, oh death! Why swim I in this lake?
Then suddenly, glory, stare I it, in the face!
Restore now my steps to the friendly estate

Return, yes, shall I, til the succeeding day,
To battle the monsters of Lake of the Cane

February 2020 Runner Up: Michael Zahn

Advice from a fellow swimmer

By Michael Zahn

As you crawl through fog, wind, waves and wakes,

on Cane or any other lakes,

don’t assume the boaters see you!

You might wear orange,

you might wear yella,

but you are still invisible, fella!

The boaters don’t mean to clip your ass,

but you are slow and they are fast.

So please show caution, give right of way

and live to stroke another day.

February 2020 Honorable Mention: Pete Gold

For the Love of Swimming

By Pete Gold

Roses are Red
Violets are Blue
I Love Swimming
I Suck at Poetry

The Lake Cane Poetry Calendar

The destination of winners

  • See who made it into this year's calendar...