Friday, December 14, 2012

Eloquent decay and mighty views

For as long as I have been traveling much in Pleasant Township, this place has moved me --- especially in late fall and winter when the old farm house's companion oak is bare and a guy can see the shape of things. It is a composition of eloquent decay that, if the talent were forthcoming, demands to be painted, sketched or at least photographed more carefully.

But "no trespassing" signs deter me, so I've never breached the gate and gone in for a closer look.

I know nothing of the old place's history, only that so far as I can remember it's always been here in roughly the same condition perched on one of the highest points in the Cedar Creek hills with stunning views to the south and east and north. Open fields meander off up the point west toward timber on what must once have been a small and challenging thin-soiled farm. I doubt that anyone who lived here ever got rich.

It must be ferociously cold up here, too, in the winter wind. But I like to imagine what it must have been like to step out that now-blocked front door onto a vanished porch some morning and into the sunrise.

This is a small part of the view southeast into the valley, hindered by pale sun shining at me Thursday morning, haze and the fact it seems like the whole world is visible from up here --- and that's a challenge to photograph. The close-cropped pasture is a reminder of just how dry it was here during the summer past. Cattle are grazing havested fields in the valley now.

The fear always is, upon starting up the hill either to north or south that the old place will be gone --- burned by vandals or buldozed along with its tree by the owner. So far, so good.

I could tell you how to get here, but if you've not driven the Pleasant Township hills --- you've missed a lot and need to spend some time doing so. Here's a hint: It's east of Tipperary, southwest of Coal Glen and west of Stoneking. Good luck.

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