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Boreal Community Media

The Canoe Paddle: an essay by local author John Bragstad

Sep 23, 2023 04:46AM ● By Content Editor
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By local author and writer John Bragstad for Boreal Community Media - September 23, 2023

Who knows where I have traveled, 
who can tell where I have been? 

I’ve seen the lodges watching west, 
I’ve been to continents then unknown. 
Rivers, valleys, long-steeped canyons, 
mother-bear home, arctic ice and 

I’ve sung to soldiers in their sleep, 
been beside them while they lingered, 
we’ve hunted rice, 
sought gold and treasure, 
without complaint,  
in silences beyond measure. 

I’ve carried songs, 
raced furlongs of rip-roar, 
tabled for your trail lunches,  
fought for places to end your day. 

We’ve been a stalwart pair, haven’t we? 
Time to rest, time for  
a day-jaunt or two,  
time to reminisce. 

Time to stoke the fire of  
a near-forgotten past, 
to make eyes bright again  
with the promise of adventure, 

From “Who’s Watching Whoo?”

About the author

John A. Bragstad has been a therapist, working with couples and individuals, for 25 years. He is self-published and is enjoying retirement. Lake Superior is just off his front porch.

He has written three books: Compass Season, Loon Laughter at Midnight, and Who's Watching Whoo? They are available in Grand Marais at Drury Lane and Lake Superior Trading Post, or at

Related: Meet your Boreal Community Media Freelance Journalist: John Bragstad

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