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Such is my dedication to the Poetry Friday cause that I am willing to brave spotty internet connectivity to bring you this post from the White Mountains of New Hampshire, which are beautiful, by the way. I so want to come back in the fall to see the leaves change, feel the chill air, and perhaps have a writerly retreat all on my very own. But I digress.

Yesterday, my family and I travelled a bit further north and hiked The Flume (no small undertaking given my screaming joints, but with rests and perseverance I managed). This is still a digression, because the Poetry Friday-related activity comes after the Flume: We drove a wee bit further still to the north, past where the Old Man fell off the Mountain, to Franconia, where Robert Frost once owned a house. It's now owned by the town of Franconia, and called the Frost Place.

In fact, he owned it from 1915 to 1920, and went there to escape hay fever (a concept I found funny, given how many allergens were all over the place, including goldenrod and pine, not to mention lots of grasses, trees, etc.) He then sold it back to the folks he bought it from, and returned for summers there off and on for years. Two of his poetry collections were largely completed there.

If you go, you can See the Film! Tour the House! Walk through a Meadow and Woods! Okay, so it's not quite as exciting as the exclamation points might imply, unless you are, like me, a complete geek and a total Frost fan. In which case, seeing the informative film about his life and his connection to the house made him more real than any intro in a book. Seeing the signed first editions of his work and the handwritten copies of some of his poems inside the house did that too, and revealed a bit about his personality and how personal some of the poems were, written for friends in some instances. And strolling the very ground where he was inspired to write such poems as The Oven Bird (typically read as a World War I poem because of the last line, where the oven bird's song seems to ask "what to make of a diminished thing") and Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening ("But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep. And miles to go before I sleep) and The Road Not Taken ("Two roads diverged in a wood and I, I took the one less-traveled by, and that has made all the difference") and many others (several of which were posted along the path through the meadow and woods), offered inspiration of its own. Plus the added bonus of mosquito bites.

For today, I give you Frost's The Pasture, from his collection called North of Boston:

I’m going out to clean the pasture spring;
I’ll only stop to rake the leaves away
(And wait to watch the water clear, I may):
I sha’n’t be gone long. —You come too.

I’m going out to fetch the little calf
That’s standing by the mother. It’s so young,
It totters when she licks it with her tongue.
I sha’n’t be gone long. —You come too.

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( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 11th, 2006 04:13 am (UTC)
I love Frost, too. His poetry is sooo... I don't think of it being poetry when I read it, I don't get caught up in the meter and the rhyme, but in the story, or the picture he's showing. He was just a great poet.

I was so sad when the Man on the Mountain fell down. He fell down the day before DH and I were going to go see him for our anniversary. We climbed Mt. Frankenstein again.

If you are in North Conway, check out Silver Birch Books, right on the main drag, in this pretty little house looking shop. (maybe it's White Birch books...) It's just a nice, relaxing little bookstore with a fabulous view from the upstairs. Oh, and the Scottish Lion shop is a blast, too.
Aug. 11th, 2006 09:02 pm (UTC)
We're actually on the other side of the ridge, in Waterville Valley. But we hit North Conway the last time we were up (and loved it).
Aug. 11th, 2006 05:11 am (UTC)
Thank you, Kelly!

I used Frost's poem "To Earthward" in some paper I wrote about Eros and Thanatos, back when I was an emo college student.

To think: I used to indulge in such ponderous ponderings.

Aug. 11th, 2006 01:29 pm (UTC)
Sounds like you're having a lovely vacay.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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