Saturday, June 9, 2012


A flash of deep-running green
The faintest of ripples
My popper
Quietly evaporated

More trout sip than bass strike

Had I been off woolgathering
Drifting somewhere else with my thoughts
As I often do while fishing these waters
I’d have missed it

It wouldn’t have been the first time
Nor would it have been the last
But I didn't

A hard strip
A lift of the rod tip
Subtle no longer

A cartwheel
A tailwalk
A slashing run downstream
A headshake

One last, desperate leap for freedom

Hard, brave work
Rewarded by a slip of the hook
A long-line release
Untouched return to safe, comfortable depths

My popper
Quietly revaporated

Good for you, Mr. Bass
Good for you


e.m.b. said...

"Hard, brave work
Rewarded by a slip of the hook"
Sometimes, I'm happy when this they've earned it.
A fine piece, Mike. A fine piece.

Mike Sepelak said...

Absolutely, Erin. This post was inspired by exactly that feeling. A nice bass got away, yesterday, and all I could do was smile and say "Good for you."

Sanders said...

Sometimes the acrobatics and pull on the end of the line is all the reward we need, or deserve.

wonderfully written...awesome stuff!

Mike Sepelak said...

Way more than we deserve, Sean. Way more.

cofisher said...

Alrighty Mike, you really got me on this one. Great writing.

Mike Sepelak said...

Thanks Howard. I really appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

Mike, I really enjoyed this! Sometimes all we need is or remember are those "Happy Hook Ups".

Mike Sepelak said...

You're right, Mel. Those hookups lost are much more vivid in my memory than the fish I've brought to hand. Thanks for the reminder.

Ken G said...

This year I've got a bit more obsessive about tracking those that self release. Not sure why. In my minds eye, they're all trophies and I like it that way.

Mike Sepelak said...

I don't know that I obsess over them, but they do stay with me. Trophies all, indeed, all to be caught another day.

M.A. Hughes said...

I identify with the long line release all too much. Nicely written.

Mike Sepelak said...

Thanks, RR. And I have mastered the LLR.