Sunday, June 5, 2011
Early mornings at the lake
I get up pretty early when I’m at the lake. I like to begin the day by sitting in an Adirondack chair on my deck, cup of coffee in hand. For a half hour or so, I observe the lake. In the very early morning, the lake water is glassy and reflective. The lake water is so still, I sometimes feel as though I’m looking at a painting or a photograph. I’ve noticed that by midmorning, 9 a.m. or so, the lake breezes wrinkle the water so that the reflections disappear. There are other things to catch one’s attention by then though—kayakers, ducks, human activity on the far shore.
But it is early morning when the lake is at its most beautiful, and the trees and boulders on the shore are reflected mirror like at the water’s edge. The great New England poet John Greenleaf Whittier wrote about this phenomenon in a poem published in 1756. Here’s what he said:
Around Sebago’s lonely lake
There lingers not a breeze to break
The mirror which its waters make.
The solemn pines along its shore,
The firs which hang its gray rocks o’er,
Are painted on the glassy floor.