By A. C. Greene
It is a harsh, distant nation, the place the elements is often very shut and the horizon distant. The Brazos nation of long-ago Fourth of July fishing expeditions; the grass-grown is still of a fashion station of the Butterfield degree Line; the streets of Abilene; the sparse grazing lands lower than endless skies—all are made resonant through a local son’s affection and realizing. it's a approach of life—resilient and persnickety—that is sort of gone.
Above all, it really is humans: the author’s grandmother, who had a mortal worry of bridges and whose premonitions of unnamed calamities (that as frequently as no longer happened), either alarmed and happy the younger boy; Uncle Aubrey, “who married late”; the blacksmith they woke up at nighttime; the known buddies; the infrequent and deliciously mysterious strangers.
With humor and powerful, unsentimental feeling, A. C. Greene conserves for us the valuable eccentricities of position and individual that are being flattened out—almost actually bulldozed away—by the impatient, insatiable onrush of the 20th century. His West Texas is a really own kingdom, yet what he seeks to percentage could be customary to all who enjoy the thoughts that tie them to their very own specific zone of America.
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Extra resources for A Personal Country
Greene writes about in this book also happens to be my own. We have shared not only a placeWest Texasand those paths and customs and myths indigenous to it, but also a common era. I was born thirty-two miles due east of his beloved Abilene, in the modest little village of Putnam, about the time he entered first grade. Herbert Hoover was president then and on the verge of sponsoring that Great Depression which the Greene and King families would keenly feel and never quite get over fearing. Our similarities do not end, but merely begin, with that time and place.
How much of me was red dirt, was sand hills and mesquite under a hot, dry sun? How much was wind and long, empty plains? What was born of slow-spoken close-mindedness, gained from a frontier brush-arbor camp meeting, or what was begun in a dugout where a young girl looked in fright and hatred at the wilderness around her? And I began to see something beyond the land and beyond my blood with the land in it. There were the others outside my blood who shaped me, for West Texas was, and is, as demanding a social environment as its natural elements are demanding.
Cedars mark the brows of the deeper ravines and those places where the earth has been wounded too deeply for nature or man to repair. "Cedarbrakes," a certain rough, raw kind of land is called, and it is good for nothing but grazing. Most of the cedar in West Texas is not tall and straight enough to be used as fence posts. Only on the hills west of Mineral Wells and Palo Pinto, through a long valley you enter at Metcalf Gap, do the cedar choppers still operate, cutting down and topping out the trees that Page 31 are suitable for commercial use and filling the air with the delicious odor of burning cedar and a faint haze of blue smoke.
A Personal Country by A. C. Greene
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