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Fishing Friends ©

Franz Grimley
Falkirk, Scotland

The darkness just faded, and strong light poured in
In the distance, the sound of a river.
And I looked to the sky and saw silver-lined clouds:
A horizon that went on forever.

I saw deer on the hillside and hawks on the wind.
A heron was taking to flight,
And there was the river, with trout rising strong
A glorious, wonderful sight

I then heard the voices; they were one’s that I knew
From the distant and long winding past
When a youth, in his innocence, fished with these men
We were meeting again at long last.

“Did ye see that wan, Gibby? It’s the size o’ a stab
If ye hook it ye’ll need a new rod,
‘Cause the thing will take off like a bat oot o’ hell!”
And I heard the reply, “Oh my God!”

It was 'Big Sammy Donald', who’s voice I’d first heard
'Big Sammy', as he was aye kent
And there he was standing, his waders in shreds
With a fishing rod, battered and bent.

“Hello there, young Franzi. My you took ye’r time.
We’ve been waiting for you for a while.
There’s broon troot and graylin’ and sea troot like this!
There’s thousands o’ fish every mile.”

And there too was Gibby, his big smiling face
was a picture of pure satisfaction
“So, whaur hae ye been?” was the first thing he said.
“Hurry up and get intae the action.”

“Where’s Johnny Miller?” The last of the band.
“He’s up at that pool, roon the bend.”
And sure enough Johnny was casting his fly.
What a pleasure to see my old friend.

“How many today, John?” I shouted across.
And he turned with a nod, and a wink,
“Just a brace or two, Franzi, and how are ye son?”
"I am well John. I’m happy... I think!"

"What’s happened to me? What am I doing here?
Where have all of my memories gone?"
And he looked at me knowingly, lowered his eyes
And quietly said, “You’ve passed on.”

“Your trials and worries, your dreads and your fears
Have left you forever my friend,
And this river is endless, and so are the trout
Come fish with us here, till the end."

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