Eastport Creek and Lakeview Cemetery

Posted on April 1, 2011


This business of laying out a 5k course is more challenging than I thought it would be, but I’m keeping at it.  For one thing, I want it to be a pretty walk.  For another, I promised Heather there wouldn’t be any squishy parts.

Katherine is sending in reports from the field. She has been to Eastport Creek and writes: The dog loves to go from one side to the other through the creek. Needless to say, I’ve almost gone with her a few times but so far haven’t. It’s really spring, the lilies are coming up in the swamp, although at this end, the lake’s still frozen and the ice fisherpeople are still venturing out.

So did she send a picture of the lovely lilies of spring? Or the astonishing ice fisherpeople of March 31? She did not. She sent a picture of the creek. That’s what you get when you send artists out to do hard-nosed reporting.  I have to admit it is a fine image of the creek in spring. That sparkly little rill dancing over its sandy bed, for all the world as if it had nothing to hide. But under the surface, there are layers and layers of secrets.

Yesterday I was over at Lakeview Cemetery and saw those north-end ice fisherpeople myself. (Just so you know, the north end is a good two miles north of the Day Park where I took yesterday’s pictures. Not even the death-defying ice fisherpeople of Eastport would go out on the Day Park ice.) I would have taken photos, but I was busy sliding down the hill not exactly on purpose. I fetched up against one of my Civil War veterans, so that was all right. I went over there expressly to try to get good photos of a couple of tombstones, and luck was with me. John Henry McPherson and Angie Evans McPherson are two of my very favorite 19th century neighbors.

All my Civil War veterans lead me into curious byways, but these two take the cake: an old Kentucky feud, Bleeding Kansas, the Burnt District in Missouri. The more time I spend with this bunch, the more I’m forced to realize that their lives were a lot more complicated than you might think. Layers and layers under the sand, just like the Eastport Creek.  Exactly the sort of forebears you might expect for people who go ice-fishing on a partly frozen lake on March 31.

Don’t worry, I won’t make you go walking in the cemetery with me on April 10.  (I’m saving that for Memorial Day.)  I guess we might have to rule out the Eastport Creek even if there are lilies in the swamp.  It would be squishy.  The search for the perfect 5k route continues.