We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
At eighteen, in Paris, I just woke up out of a dream just before dawn, and stepped through the long window from my cold room with its red silk walls. Shivering a little in my dressing gown, I leaned on the balustrade and, look, overnight a light snow had fallen; no car had driven over it yet, it lay in the street as white, as innocent, as snow on the open fields.
Then something approached with a calm rhythm of hoof-beats made softer by the snow, the sound of a quiet heart. It was a heaped-up wood cart pulled by a gray horse who walked along slowly, head down, while the driver sat at the back of one shaft and hunched over to light his cigarette.
From above, I saw clearly the lit match in the old man's cupped hands, its glow on his long jaw, the small well of flame between his living palms like the flare of the soul in his body. He went on down the street, and the sky went on growing lighter, and I saw how he left his dark tracks behind him on the whiteness of the snow, just the lines of the two wheels, slightly wavering, and the dints of the horse's hooves between them, a writing in an undiscovered language, something whose meaning we feel sure we know, and still can't quite translate.
When I stepped inside again, I stopped thinking about love for a minute — I thought about it almost all the time then — and thought instead about being alive for a while in a world with cobblestones, new snow, and the unconscious poem printed by hooves on the maiden street.
Of course I was not yet ready to be grateful.
(Barnes lives in Maine. She is the daughter of Henry Beston, author of The Outermost House - a book that was a mainstay of my family. There is a brief interview with Barnes here, with a listing of her books.)
Explain to us dear BD, exactly where is this place that the Feds want to put a windmill farm in relationship to this precious place that Beston wrote about. How much of the coast line is truly beautiful and remains free of second home developments? Those of us in the "remaining west" are desperate to keep our viewsheds of open spaces where great prairies meet unbelievable mountains. But, developing the legal argument that preserves "view" is nearly impossible. I for one was thrilled with wind energy at first--no more. No more any building of any wind farms until places like Las Vegas, New York City, Los Angeles, etc. require that high rises reduce the use of energy and build to conserve, even in some cases retrofit. Until there is some legislation that reduces the amount of electricity consumed I am not supporting the destruction of sacred places for the production of more energy. ENOUGH is ENOUGH! We have been having this national conversation for 35 years now. Please tell us more about this issue of wind farms on your beautiful seascapes!