poetry and prose about place

on pond ice

with 14 comments

The days are short, reminding me of days when my son was young and I resented the brief daylight.  We left for work in the dark and arrived home after the sun set.  To spend just a little time with my son in the snow, I would turn on the outside light and play with him for a few precious minutes at the end of every day.

On weekends, we would seek out the smallest patch of ice and skate together.  Any patch of ice would do.  Some years we tried to make a small rink.  Usually, we made do with the strip of ice formed at the edge of our driveway…

Our favourite place to skate was a small hollow in the grey woods behind our house.  We dubbed it “Hoot-and-Hollow Pond” (because it was just ‘a hoot and a holler’ out back, and because we hear owls so often in the grey woods).  The pond was small, but just the right size for my son to wobble around on his first skates.

In the years since we skated there, the trees have grown thick and tall around the pond.  I went looking for it this week and found the ruin of the little bridge we built across a narrow place in the pond…

ruined bridge over Hoot-and-Hollow can see the broken boards and old nails

and ice on the little pond itself…

Hoot-and-Hollow Pond today, the water level a little lower than when we skated there



a skate on the woodland pond




brittle cracks beneath the weight

of blades, we spread our bodies thin

twirl on the delicate lift

of snowflakes drift

above the pond, gather

firs around us, lean away, bend

beneath the weight of snow, find

room to glide, the edge where white birch

cage faint light

magnify the gleam

of paper bark, frail ice

white snow and stars

resist the dark



© Jane Tims 2011

Written by jane tims

January 11, 2012 at 9:34 am

14 Responses

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  1. Simply beautiful. I was right there with you.


    Deborah Carr

    January 21, 2012 at 8:56 am

  2. Wonderful! I always enjoy my visits to your blog! I love the way you accompany your poetry and prose with the pictures. I really feel like I have been somewhere. Thanks Jane!




    January 13, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    • Hi. Thanks for your comments! I am glad to have shared the experience! Jane


      jane tims

      January 14, 2012 at 9:48 am

  3. I enjoyed going with you to a place with such fond memories. I love that the little bridge you built is still there covered up with all that snow.
    I also love the poem.

    I have a gift waiting for you at



    January 13, 2012 at 1:27 am

    • Hi Rosie. What a nice tribute! I love the snakeskin photo! Blogging is a lot of fun and helps us to meet such nice people. Thanks! Jane


      jane tims

      January 13, 2012 at 10:29 am

  4. What wonderful memories… My sister and I used to skate on parts of the swamp behind our house. It’s something how bodies of water have a life-span, too.


    Barbara Rodgers

    January 12, 2012 at 6:39 pm

    • Hi Barbara. Sometimes our cold weather is not fun, but sometimes so wonderful! Jane


      jane tims

      January 13, 2012 at 10:23 am

  5. Beautiful post. I love the name you gave your little pond.



    January 12, 2012 at 5:43 pm

  6. Beautiful icy imagery, Jane. The skates are so sweet too. 🙂


    Eve Redwater

    January 11, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    • Hi Eve. Those poor skates needed some dusting off before I could draw them, but they have been on all my skating outings since high school! Jane


      jane tims

      January 12, 2012 at 10:59 am

  7. Beautiful.


    Ellen Grace Olinger

    January 11, 2012 at 11:30 am

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