Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Blue Spots

The naming of names is an interesting business; names are intriguing. Here's a favorite poem of mine by Kate Barnes, the daughter of Elizabeth Coatsworth(The Cat Who Went to Heaven, Newbery Award 1931). Where do our names for places and things come from? Some simple, some strange, indeed. If you've traveled some of Maine's blue highways, you've probably come across a few of these 'blue spots'. This one is Sebago. Enjoy!

Lakes and Ponds: Some Blue Spots on the Maine Highway Map
By Kate Barnes
There's Blunder Pond and Bluffer Pond, Molasses Pond and Bean;
There's Scraggly Lake and Ragged Lake; there's Silver, Clear, and Green;
Bear Pond, Caribou, Beaver, Mink; Moose Pond and Eagle Lake.
White Horse Lake and Spider Lake; Panther Pond and Snake;
Hound and Otter, Togue and Salmon; Loon, and Swan, and Duck.
There's Hot Brook Lake and Cold Stream Pond; there's White Pond and there's Black;
Lobster Lake and Bean Pot Lake; Shin Pond for a stew;
(Toddy Pond will make you cheerful, Brandy Pond will too,)
Hay Lake, Harrow Lake, Chain of Ponds; Buttermilk and Mud;
White Oak, Cedar, Seven Tree, Elm; Mill Pond, Meadow, Flood;
Meddybemps and Pocomoonshine; Simsquish, Skitacook,
Syslodobsis, Nahinakanta; Ugh Lake and Ticook;
Indian Pond and Soldier Pond; Polly Pond and Jim;
Round Pond, Square Lake, Corner Pond; Cut Lake and Old Stream;
Endless Lake and Desolation; St. Froid in the snow;
Flying Pond and The Enchanted, its haunted stream below:-
Blue spots on the road map with their blue names printed by,
Many words for "water", many eyes that see the sky.


  1. Delicious post. I'd love to hear this read aloud.

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  3. I'll have to look at a good map of Maine again! I recognized a few of those names from my short residency in Maine. I read "The Cat who went to heaven" when I was a child . . . brings back memories . . . thanks.