Second Pond, ON


Watermark by Merridy Cox Bradley
Collected by Ruby Pajares
My Watermark is Second Pond, Ontario.

When I was a young child and a teenager, on weekends at the Forks of the Credit, the second pond was a favourite destination for an afternoon walk. The old railway is now part of the Bruce Trail. The pond, unfortunately, is almost grown in—the result of ecological succession. I was disappointed when I found out last year that the salamanders are no longer breeding there.

The memory of those times prompted me to write this poem.

The Pond

Along the old railway,
Now a green forest trail,
Quietly I walk, now
That the sun warms the earth,
Looking for spring flowers
And arriving song birds.
Water runs off the bank
And soaks the path there
Where I must watch my feet
And detour over the roots
Of encroaching cedars.
Quite hidden is the pond
Where the hills form a cup
And the rocks create a seat
Where I can rest a bit.
This place is magical,
Where the secret water
Shelters salamanders
And their clusters of eggs,
Where red efts roam the verge
And blackbirds the rushes,
Where liverworts spread green
And ferns unfurl in fronds.
Here I sit, watching all
That reveals itself when
The sun warms the silence.
Finally, fulfilled as
Nature’s life unfurls in
New growth before my eyes,
I lightly lift myself
Up on the ancient rock,
Stretch my limbs and feel,
Vibrantly, a newness
Soaking inside me
With an old, old wisdom
Of connectivity.

©Merridy Cox Bradley, 2015

Published in Antao-Xavier, Cheryl, Nina Munteanu & Merridy Cox Bradley. 2015. The Literary Connection, Volume II: My Canada. An IOWI Anthology. In Our Words Inc.
Watermarks are true stories about you and your connection to a body of water. By archiving your story, you add to a living record of our shared water heritage, protecting these waters for generations to come. So tell us: What is your watermark?