Wild Trout and Trillium Flowers

On Mother’s Day I crossed the creek and drove into the hills to see the one who’d brought me kicking and screaming into this world long ago.

She lives alone now and requires daily care. It was my turn to fix the breakfast dutifully, provide the medications, do the daily chores. We conversed about the birds and bushy-tailed critters on the deck. I said goodbye, told her we would meet again later in the day for dinner with the family.

It was time to fish for a while, to immerse myself briefly in that mother of all mothers where the wild trout dwell and where the mayflowers blossom in their time.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI caught the first small brookie on a March Brown dry, but probably could’ve hooked it on a pattern tied with hair from the family cat. The small streams of rivertop country were flowing wonderfully and benefiting from recent rains. Their native trout were hungry and on the prowl.

For a moment I held the brookie beside a trillium flower blooming on the bank. Usually when the trillium blooms in May, the brook trout fishing is at its best around here. The streams are full, allowing trout to move around in less restricted water. They visit the deeper pools, riffles, and pockets formed by rocks and logs.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The trees were not yet fully in leaf. Occasionally I got a glimpse of migratory warblers. The woodland flowers were at their peak, blooming while the sun still filtered through a young canopy. The trillium seemed a study in natural symmetry.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThree petals, sepals, leaves. Three species by these streams, on banks where three species of trout reside.

Between visits to the mother this day, I fished for nearly three hours. I fished three neighborhood streams, and caught three wild brookies in each one.

Could we live each day embracing natural symmetry? I don’t view it as a perfect thing. Inspect it, and you’ll see the fraying edge.

Sun and cloud and wind. Then wind and cloud and… snow! Brief squalls at the noon hour, on Mother’s Day, wild flurries blown around like seeds.

Trillium, or “Wake-robin.” Even the name has three syllables. A gateway flower.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I hold a purplish blossom, or a white one, or a smaller white one with a blaze of red around the throat. I absorb the floral beauty for a moment then release it. What do I see?  I hold a small wild trout, as well, and ask a similar question.

Only poetry can say what is held. Only wildness can know what is truly there.

For this we can thank the Mother.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

About rivertoprambles

Welcome to Rivertop Rambles. This is my blog about the headwaters country-far afield or close to home. I've been a fly-fisher, birder, and naturalist for most of my adult life. I've also written poetry and natural history books for thirty years. In Rambles I will mostly reflect on the backcountry of my Allegheny foothills in the northern tier of Pennsylvania and the southern tier of New York State. Sometimes I'll write about the wilderness in distant states, or of the wild places in the human soul. Other times I'll just reflect on the domestic life outdoors. In any case, I hope you enjoy. Let's ramble!
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8 Responses to Wild Trout and Trillium Flowers

  1. Junior says:

    That’s a nice post. Where is that little bridge located?

    • Junior, The little bridge is located on Rose Brook. Remote area near Wileyville. Bridge has been closed for ages and presents an interesting spot, with another feeder stream on its other side.


  2. What beautiful imagery and images. Excellent, Walt. Your mother deserves to be proud!

  3. stevegalea6953 says:

    Very nice Walt. Our trilliums are starting too and I’m starting to see trout lilies and spring beauties more and more. We had snow on the deck this morning though. Thank goodness it’s gone now.

    • Steve, The dash of snow across the trillium blooms and the apple blossoms (just out) is a sobering reminder that the winter isn’t as far from us as we believed. Tonight we cranked up the wood stove once again, thankful that the winter season left us with a bit for colder times.


  4. Joseph Hord says:

    This post and the pictures that go along with it just reminded me why spring is my favorite time to fish for wild trout in the mountains. Thanks for taking us along for the journey!

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