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Isolation report #1.
This morning, I think the third day of leaving Louisville for the solitude of the lake, I wrote an inspired piece and published it on my blog. If anyone is interested in Rumi poetry, I have studied that work, been to many of the sources and the piece is chocked full of tidbits of information about how Coleman Barks came to be one of the most popular poets in the USA. I sent him a link to the article. The last time we talked he told me a story about seeing the Steamer Delta Queen in Chattanooga.
Went to town. Was going to go to town yesterday but a wind storm blew a tree over the road and plans were changed. Nothing much going on in town. Walmart was not as busy as I thought it would be, finally got a good loaf of bread. Their two for one dollar pies need to not be on sale. I am a sucker for a good pie and they are not bad. I hate Walmart, but, and however and say no more, nudge nudge, going straight into the heart of American culture is fun sometimes.
The Mennonites are planting their gardens. Plowing their fields. They have a big pile of horse shit and dirt piled up to spread over. Got a wave from the woman who makes quilts and also repairs them. Her gardens are ready to go, she has greens in the green house and many chickens in the yard. The windmill at the other big house was spinning. I think they use it for water pumping.
The Mennonite boy was plowing today. He has five big workhorses tied up to a plow. I have watched him season by season become an experianced field worker. A couple of seasons ago, I watched as his father taught him how to plow using the horses. He was about nine and it looked funny seeing a kid in charge of that much power. Five big horses. Big ones. Beautiful. The fields, absent the tractor plowing, really look amazing. Brown, rich, ready to work!
Played the Banjo a bit today. Went on a walk down by the lake. The water rose about 3 feet with the rains. Got a bit of firewood split yesterday when I thought the electricity might be out for a while. Got plenty of good food. Polished and sharpened an old kitchen knife I think was my Grandma’s. That is what I love about this place. There is a little bit of my family everywhere.
Talked today with my buddy Paul Hassfurder. Paul inherited the hand built house that Harlan built when he was in his fifties. We talked about what Harlan Hubbard would have said about this pandemic. I think about Harlan a-lot. Paul is always good for a Harlan story. I bought a peach pie today because the last time I went to Payne Hollow we stayed up late and eventually ate a whole peach pie together by the fire. We sat up all night talking about art, music, and he would tell stories about the Hubbards. That memory of that night is good for peach pies. I will not forget the story he told about when Harlan was bit several times by a copperhead on the foot. What a fireside story. While I visited Paul, I read Harlan’s Payne Hollow Journal sitting by the fireplace that is illustrated in the first pages while sitting in the chair he wrote the book in.
The plan for the rest of this evening will be to drink some more of this good decaf coffee, fart around, finish listening to this Idries Shah podcast. Might play some guitar, might not, might work on some poetry, might not. Might build a fire and sit by it and call it mediation. I am good at that.
March 14 – 2020