Three Mile Lake (A Prayer for Spring) by Bradley McIlwain

There are whispers in the

out here, cold cuts breath
like bone;

birds crack twilight
effortless as manna.

In the morning I will
break camp with fog—

wander listless valleys
lucid as a salmon in rain.

Bradley McIlwain is a Canadian-based writer and poet who lives and works in rural Ontario. His poems have been published in national and international print and online magazines. He holds a Bachelor of Arts, Honours, from Trent University, with a major in English Literature. His first book of poems, Fracture, is now available.

*Competition entry*

7 thoughts on “Three Mile Lake (A Prayer for Spring) by Bradley McIlwain”

  1. That feeling of solitary-ness in nature has always stood out most to me on foggy, cold mornings. The northern california coast, camping…that is the image this evokes for me, though your mention of salmon probably places it further north.

  2. Thanks Jonathon and Sarah for your kind comments. There is definitely something about that solitary moment in nature when the earth is still opening its secrets around us, and I always tend to be nostalgic for those memories and those experiences I’ve had, especially when I was younger.

  3. I like your arrangement of verbs:


    They go from soft to hard and back to soft. It gives the poem a feeling of circularity or completion for me.

  4. Thanks Will! I appreciate your comments. Glad you enjoyed and made a connection with the cyclical feeling in the poetry!

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