The Old Millpond
by Nathan A. Baker

In the swamp behind the cypress grove
We’d fish, and search for bullfrogs, hanging
Our trotlines between moss-laden trees
Hooks baited fat with night crawlers, and shad

Minnows that reflected silver summer’s moon;
We’d remove catfish from these lines
Later,checking each one periodically,
As we hunted frogs until sunrise next morning.

Catfish fillets, and fresh frog legs, seasoned
Cornmeal covered and sizzling in hot oil;
We’d breakfast on fine swamp delicacies,
And talk making plans to do it all again

When the Carolina sun went down and
Darkness returned to the old millpond.
We were both young then, years before
Addiction took my best friend from me

Piercing him with its chemical spear like
A bullfrog caught wide-eyed in darkness.

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