Saturday, July 02, 2011

From the Forest primeval to the Ocean primordial

Early Saturday afternoon Susie and I headed off to the wilds of western Rhode Island, in search of ancient civilizations and ghosts of long-forgotten times. Obscured by the rather innocuous name of the "George B. Parker Woodland," what we found was a feast for the senses in the dark quiet of the woods.

This was a place of vanished lives, where you have to carefully pick your way along the rocky woodland floor and where you find yourself faced with dozens of rock cairns stacked there for reasons unknown by people long forgotten -- and where you can tread steps of a long-dead family which once thrived, laughed, loved and lived amidst the ruins of a farm now only one stop of a visitor's trail. This is a step back into a time when the margin for error in everyday life left little room for mistakes, where life could just as easily and quickly become death in the blink of an eye.

From the claustrophobic beauty of a ruined past to the infinite openness of the oceanic horizon took less than an hour of time to drive but still seems as if we migrated from one planet to another. A return to Sachuest Wildlife Refuge in Middletown, RI where you can look east to Sakonnet and west to Newport north to civilization and south to the emptiness of water.

After all this, it was a quiet drive home and an evening of grilled food finished off by another installment in "Foyle's War."

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