Op/Ed

Letter to the editor: An ode from afar to the Green Mountain State

It has been nearly 50 years since I last lived in Vermont, yet Vermont has never left me. I lived in Brandon in 1965 and 1966, across from the Neshobe Golf Course, before my father moved the family to Southern California so he could go to work in the aircraft industry. I always planned to move back to Vermont, but as things and time worked out, didn’t, but I still feel Vermont in my bones just about every day. Here is a poem that expresses some of that feeling.
 
Vermont Locking
Each afternoon now, earlier now too, the edges of Otter Creek begin to freeze. Newly forming ice crystals reach silently, slowly, into the current.
The creek can do nothing about it.
If I sit here long enough, I can see it happen.
Winter lurks.
Beyond the creek’s thinning flow, I watch the mountainside maples wait. They know nature’s bounty must be paid:
maple red, the color of time pressing.
On my walk here, as I neared the water’s edge, I caught mid-air an autumn leaf falling, denying it ground and renewal, for as Frost says, “The same leaves over and over again!”
It was a finger-tip catch and I bowed to the creek and the rocks and the mountainside maples. I thought briefly I might return home, press the leaf between the pages of “A Boy’s Will,” but at the creek’s edge vanity easily passes.
My grip loosens. The leaf twirls nestling beside the path.
David C. Shepard
Hacienda Heights, Calif.

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