larvalbug bytes archives / Main Index / previous / next

September, 2002

Floating Islands

Originally from Moments by Valerie, a collection of memories (1961-1983), written in 1986 and presented to Larry on their first anniversary.

Vic and Val, with schnauzers, Krikit and Samantha,
at a friend's farm, Gleason, WI, Aug., 1969

Bogs in Wisconsin consist of low areas of clear water filled with bright green sphagnum moss and supporting a variety of other vegetation such as blueberries and pine trees. We used to sink up to our knees in the cool mess while hiking through it. Sometimes bogs form on top of lakes and become islands. We could canoe next to these and reach our paddles under the edge and touch the nothingness. The sphagnum rafts were very large and supported big trees and other vegetation as they drifted around the lake. Walking on them was a little scary as we sank into the thick, soft moss, always wondering if our feet would continue on through into the black water below. The islands also shifted and rocked when touched, and any activity caused slow waves as the moss was set in motion. It was rather disconcerting to feel the "ground" swaying under us, with a calm, rhythmic persistence.