Rice Lake, ON - Zahraa Saab

My Watermark is Rice Lake, Ontario.

Trip to the cottage, summer 2016. It was a yearly tradition to go up to Rice Lake each summer, but this summer in particular left me feeling very introspective. Spending time in the lake, as the oldest amongst the children and the youngest amongst the adults, it was an opportunity to bypass the rules and responsibilities associated with our respective ages and simply enjoy our time. As the days and hours passed, the kids developed a game – they would test the waters to see how many of them it would take to submerge the floating dock. The more they tried, the further away the dock floated, reaching depths that even the adults could not always reach. I remember what it felt like sitting on that platform that was floating in the water – thinking that if the platform were to move any farther off shore, the depth of the water would submerge me. I’m a swimmer, but not a highly skilled one – and so the thought of having to arise from the depths and swim far distances frightened me – I couldn’t help but think of how my arms would fail me, my long clothes would drag me down. I also found the depth of the water intimidating: here stood something lifeless, that has the ability to sustain my life, but also take my life away, and essentially – this makes water all the more powerful. It powers our very existence, dominating over all life-forms. Perhaps we should rethink the hierarchy of the world, and place all living things below that which gives them life – water.

Rice Lake, ON
Mariam Jammal
Zahraa Saab

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