Even with thongs, I hobble into the water, glad when I can lift my poor feet from the pebbles. These lakes are cruel. I swim quickly, willing my body to adjust to the cold, working to stay on the surface, and gasping with the effort. I tuck the thongs under the straps of my swimmers. 

All is blue—mountains, hills, trees, lake and sky…

Towelling dry to warm myself, I smile across at my husband. We are amused by our German friends who undress immediately into dry swimmers, only to put their wet swimmers back on each time they re-enter the water. Nearby, a naked man climbs into his boat. "He's always naked," say our friends. 

Ducks swim effortlessly towards us—two adult birds with several half grown babies. With ease, their webs walk herringbone steps from the water’s edge. It's tough terrain here, but they waddle right through between us, to the grass behind. This is their territory. A ferry, so small in the distance, has crossed the far side and disappeared. Who would have expected its wash would kiss our feet? 

sunny patch—
coffee and conversation
lost in translation


Helen Davison belongs to the haiku group Cloudcatchers in Northern NSW. The Japanese forms are a challenge for her, for she is not sure she can emulate all those who've gone before her. Such a high standard to meet. However, a recent trip to Japan has inspired her to keep trying.