There once was a pair of anglers,
Who met on a rivers bend,
They fell in love with each other,
And the sport they would always defend.
They fished in the famous rivers,
Of the upper and lower midwest,
For steelies, rainbows, and brown trout,
and any other fish they could test.
They fished the Au Sable and Grayling,
The Muskegon and the Pere Marquette,
They enjoyed fishing with each other,
And knew there were better things yet!
They moved their skills to the Rockies,
Blue ribbon streams out there all,
The Madison, Big Hole and Ruby,
and the Yellowstone was always a ball.
They got into guiding and writing,
To support the habit they love,
And taught others the joy of fly fishing,
The sport they both held high above.
Not only the art of fly casting was taught,
not only the match of the hatch,
but of ethics and honor and skill of the play,
and the future and releasing the catch.
Their skills were honed with both rod and pen,
and was bringing them interest and fame.
They were known 'round the west as two of the best,
Even the famous were dropping their name.
They moved on again, to the northwest,
In the Seattle area they're now found.
Legends and tales of their exploits and trips,
both real and made up still abound.
Over the years, through triumphs and tears,
Many things I'm sure they've forgot.
A small stream, or a lake, or a fish on the take,
but not things that could never be bought.
They still hold those things high in their minds,
Of these they'll never release,
The defense of the sport of fly fishing,
With honor, and ethics won't cease.
They talk of the "family of anglers",
And all of the friendships they've made,
The evidence of what they have taught folks,
Can be found in the streams that they wade.
I'm honored to be part of their "family",
I think of them when my line starts to race,
I know some day that I'll meet them,
Not just online, but face to face.
~Randy Fratzke, August 1998