East Fork Lake looks different now.
No longer the slumbering giant, lurking beneath last fall’s fog, left one morning as a bitter night dropped its chill onto warmer water, and hurried off toward dawn.
We paddled back, as far as the creek would allow, onto a wide gravel bar, covered densely with water-willow, side to side. The blooms now gone, the leaves stained with mud from summer rains that flood this plain. And after searching for a path across it and finding none deep enough to ride upon, sat to rest in the shade of a sycamore—leaving Red Canoe caught on the rocky bottom, waiting within view.
Across the expanse of water-willow, clear, small pools—constantly refreshed by a layer of rushing water, inches deep, dotted the field of green.
Crayfish scurried ahead of my feet, disappearing backward beneath the flat rocks, until only the scarlet tips of their pincers could be seen.
Small fish snuggled in to my sandals.
And damselflies a brilliant red, darted and dashed, waiting and chasing.
And I with my camera, stood in their midst.