Growing up me The Lake Uncategorized


I long for the sound 
of an old
wooden screen door
oak frame, wire mesh
heavy, with a new
so the initial slam 
triggers recoil – 
residual wood WHAP!

Nothing to stop an 
old wooden screen door
save gravity
those doors
were rapt percussion
a backbeat to youthful 

The one at grandma and 
grandpa’s cabin 
portal to the
down the hill
or the heavier-framed 
with Coke-sign bumper
jingling bell – the 
front door of 
Larson’s corner store 
where you always got a 
slam when arriving to 
an empty for deposit
again upon 
with excitement and 
cold, full bottle of 
Nesbitt’s Strawberry 

I long for the sound 
of an old 
wooden screen door
oak frame, wire mesh
heavy, with a new

like the ones I was told
as a kid 
to never slam but 
that could 
never contain me
or my fond recollection

I’ll forever let that
door slam but
I’ll never let it 

– Mark L. Lucker

© 2021

Growing up me The Lake Uncategorized Young love


summer comes to a close
autumnal breezes waft
rustling memories of those
days when the close of summer
had more definitive endings

sun-drenched days of youthful
frolic, innocent play, done

swimming, playing with frogs in
holes dug on sandy beaches at
grandparent’s homes; ‘the lake’
summer Xanadus of childhood
one year, scenic backdrops for
advancing adolescence the next

the summer dented pails,
bent shovels lay unused in
boathouse corner; replaced with
initials inside a heart, drawn
artfully at dusk in beach sand with
carefully chosen stick, just to be
erased by evening’s gentle waves

Previous summers we traveled
in packs along endless lakeshore
some ‘ooing’ over discovered shells
all ‘eewing!’ over dead, bloated fish
skipping rocks to show machismo

But our duo walks became more
intimate strolls through the woods
privacy trumping pinecone collection,
coy separation from the collective
group not as subtle as we hoped

Each summer indelible as the
next; parts of many years blending
seamlessly together, a montage of
youthful Julys, childhood vacations

But the starkness of one summer
that is viewed not with the gauziness
of looking back fondly, but with clarity
of time, place, purpose…firsts.

One brilliant, Kodacolor snapshot
that never made it into any scrapbook
yet still remains the clearest picture

especially when summer ends
and the breezes of fall swirl

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2017

Growing up me Love and Romance The Lake Uncategorized Young love

A Minnesotan’s First Love

I was a good friend of her brother –
he knows, but has never said a word

On the rare occasions we still meet
he smiles a knowledgable,
unbelieving, remembering grin
and I always wonder, after all of the
years that have passed, just how much
she has told him…

or if he figured it all out on his own
just watching her face during family
dinner-table reminisces about those
warm northwoods summers at the lake.