Red Flag Flying Today

August 25, 2010


Today I walked to the lookout and was surprised that there were not many people on the beach. The sun was shining and the water warm enough. I believe people have become more aware of rip tide warnings. A red is flying at the State Park. A red flag means do not swim.
A yellow flag means swim with caution. A green flag means it’s safe to go in the water.

A northwest wind is blowing setting up the right conditions for rip tides on Lake Michigan. I wrote this poem in 2006. Many people have been lost in the big lake and it makes me sad.

Red Flag Flying

Swimmers sweep away in a rip tide:

a long line of people join hands

to wade out in the surf.

A helicopter flies over the water.

A Coast Guard boat searches

wet suited divers probe the deeps.

For days family and friends keep

a vigil on the shore…gaze out

at the water.

They stand watch for hours.

A black sun burns with a fiery corona

a red flag flies.

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