sna poems #68: lulu lake

lulu lake is almost 1,200 acres of preserve in the southern kettle moraine, with a kettle lake fed by the mukwonago river and nestled in the lowlands of glacial desposits, fenlands, sedge meadow, shrub carr, and a bog, and with oak openings and prairie in the uplands. rare fish, mussels, and plants are protected here, though that was difficult to see in this early stage of the spring thaw. but we did see evidence of the non-native plant removal that is helping keep the oak openings thriving. the diversity of this area deserves another visit when warmer weather has arrived for sure.

thanks to the wisconsin chapter of the nature conservancy and the wisconsin dnr for tending this land too!


wetlands are stirring

under the sun

the thicket stays still


white on the lake

a gash in moraine

my son and i watch

sna poems #67: pickerel lake fen

pickerel lake fen is, well, a lake and a fen. the calcareous fen is large, seeping out of a glacial ridge, and is one of the most biologically diverse fens in s.e. wisconsin. the lake is still frozen but the edge is thawing to reveal all sorts of small life if the eye will rest long enough to see. the uplands are turning back to prairie after being farmed, and good tall oaks in their openings dot the fen-edge. several plants are protected here.

thanks to the wisconsin chapter of the nature conservancy for tending this land.


sun and earth-tilt

discover the fen’s

living heart


eagle white on blue sky

as geese browse prairie

heady blend of gravel and oak


the lake shore muck

an invertebrate paradise

and we share them for a moment


miniature crevasse,

ablation in miniature—

harmless wintertime

sna poems #66: beulah bog

beulah bog is a series of four kettles at the southern end of kettle moraine, which itself was formed by the frictional forces of the green bay lobe and lake michigan lobe of the laurentide ice sheet grinding and sliding past one another over thousands of years in the last ice age.

there are floating mud flats, quaking sedge and sphagnum mats, a tamarack wood, and open water. several species of insectivorous plants live here too, though we didn’t see any this early. shoots were on the make, however, and i think we saw the early stirrings of calla lily and poison ivy. lots of oak debris along the slope descending to the bog-moat that circles the tamaracks. the first hike not on snow in a couple months, which was refreshing.


past the walworth county

line, bogs and kettles

lay in watery wait


bog-edge thaws

a muddy moat

bosoming the larch stand