Thursday, November 18, 2010

Just saying hello

I have not posted for awhile. I have nothing--or nothing new--to say about the elections or anything else topical or current. This is just a check in for this site only and not for the others where I usually cross post.

I don't want to forget the larger world, but my small one has been quite intense lately. My husband has had some health issues, which happily seem to be resolving. We finally decided what to do about High Valley  a year after my mother-in-law moved and a couple of months after her longtime tenants moved to the home they bought.

We are going to move to the house ourselves, live in the apartment the tenants have vacated and extend the activities of the center to the downstairs of Olga's house, which was, after all, a school and where her long wooden table can still seat at least thirteen. Then we can sell the house where we raised our children and put the proceeds towards preserving High Valley.

It seems such an obvious solution, more than one person asked why we didn't think of it before. There are reasons. Douglas was reluctant to move back to the scene of his childhood. And much as I admire and enjoy my mother-in-law, I frequently declared that I did not want to become her, that is someone in charge of a lot of buildings and contending with all the people who might inhabit them. I grew up in a rectory, and the idea of owning property is still strange to me. Yet I did grow up in the midst of community where rituals regularly took place. Not so different from High Valley. As for the land we are committed to preserving, Douglas and I both conceive of it as not belonging to us but to itself. It also finally dawned on me, that even if I live in what was Olga's house and tend the land she loved, I will still be myself. I will have the chance to go on loving land that I have loved since I was a sixteen-year-old high school drop out and maid-of-all-work living in a tree house on the hill across the pond, receiving nightly the kids who ran away from school till morning.

For all it makes sense in so many ways, the decision was made for me in this one moment:

Decided: Copper Beech in Autumn

it was the tree that did it
shining there, the sun’s
fire caught in its leaves
a tree that I could see
through my window every day
if I finally turn and meet my fate

So that's what's been happening. In the midst of everything, I am making steady progress with the revisions of Red-Robed Priestess. I hope to complete them by Winter Solstice. I don't have an official publication date yet, sometime next Fall. I will keep you posted.

Joyous Season of Feasts to all!