Thursday, November 12, 2015

affirmation for Val

I just was reading Val's post here, and then picked up my book, Rural Free by Rachel Peden.

"Do the winter fields look pretty to you? asked Dick (her husband) as we stood at the front window watching the children get on the school bus.  I thought the view of bare trees and snowy fields, through John Fielder's living room window, was just simply beautiful. John's window looks out on a faded red barn, a nice-sized creek, and a stony hillside with two dead elms at the foot of it. Actually, if the rain's not running down your neck, and your feet aren't cold, any winter day on the farm is beautiful, he added. "

This book was written in sixty-one, and was recently withdrawn from our library collection. Well, we have to buy new things, and we have to make room for them! But, I love these kinds of writings. This woman was no Gladys Taber, but any journal type book of farming or country life - from the past, especially - is so appealing.

[About Dick]: "A year at the Purdue University did not change his farm way of talking, any more than a comb could take the curl out of his dark hair. But a man can be poetic by nature and yet express himself in the handy, accurate language of farmers. 
He has prejudices and strong personal opinions. He is left-handed, tall, slightly stooped, and now wears bifocal glasses. He likes to read; prefers the sophisticated New Yorker the farm magazines, which he finds depressing. "


  1. I wish our libraries would keep these old treasures on the shelves. The new books really don't compare.

    1. Susan, I agree with you wholeheartedly. I don't know what the solution is. Until the average person becomes aware of the value of these older (and maybe not-terribly-attractive-looking) things, it's going to continue on in this way.

  2. Thank you for this. :) I just bookmarked this and two other of her books on amazon. :)

  3. I could write pages on how troubling it is to see libraries tossing out wonderful books and frankly often put in place books of poor quality and worse. At times I despair of it all; I remember my friends from Romania being shocked at one of the local small libraries in Ottawa having no classical literature at all.... well, Lord help us!