A vision in white
the white wood canvas canoe
across the deep blue water.
Remembering when it
cradled her toddler daughter
On the rough wood cabin floor?
Looking up at Mt Hope
with its white snow bib
and dark green shoulders?
Gazing unknowingly into the future
when the two would be alone together
no longer able to paddle this canoe?
I found this sepia-toned picture of my mother, taken and developed by my father some 65 years ago, while poring through a trunk full of photos. Mummy was always at home in a canoe having learned to paddle growing up near Kalamalka Lake in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley. The much-prized white wood canvas canoe was at our cabin on Kawkawa Lake near Hope, BC some 100 miles east of Vancouver. And I did sleep in it when I was two years old. We had to break the 200 mile trip from Vancouver to Lillooet over harsh, twisty gravel roads. What is now a four hour journey took two days of hard driving in 1948! Daddy and a friend clambered down the path to the canoe-house and trudged slowly back up, holding the canoe over their heads so I had a bed. By all accounts I had a very good sleep.
Frances Lamont would have been 107 on August 9th. This picture and the poem are posted in thanksgiving for her life and love.