Evening Poem, January 9, 2019

I saw a redbird in a bush this January day
The bush was bare branches, brittle twigs
Grey as the winter sky
And the bright bird perched within, alone
Like a beating heart
Like the fire of life in some long-dead forest
Like living color against black and white
Like some remnant left over from the time
When life coursed over this little hill
Like a sparkling river

copyright 2019








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The First Day of Winter

On the first day of winter he awoke and stood at his window and looked out on his fields wet with rain.  It had taken him longer this year to clean the banks and hillsides.  He no longer went at tasks to finish them in one day.  Now he worked as time and strength allowed and walked away from unfinished jobs, knowing or hoping that another day would soon come when he might have a few more hours to swing the scythe or axe or mattock.

His work no longer bore the neatness and evenness of that in his earlier days when all the cuttings, all the plowing, was of the same vintage.  Now his fields looked not ragged or unkempt but rather like a patchwork quilt made of squares and rectangles clean in and of themselves, but contrasting with those adjoining.  Nonetheless, on this rainy morning of the day when the sun would begin its certain return to dominance, he looked on his fields stretching away to their forest borders and felt pride in his work and joy in his stewardship and hope in the return of the seasons of growth.

copyright 2018

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Inside The Cavern

As they neared the top of the hill they came out from under the forest and stood before a great rock face that arched back into the hillside like the end of some huge stadium.  Rachel stood now in the snow above her boots and took advantage of the moment’s rest.  Her feet ached from the ski boots and her legs ached from the morning’s arduous trek.   She drank from a canteen, then backed down to the treeline and leaned against the trunk of a beech while the two men who led the group spoke to each other and motioned to one spot and another in the rock face. 

When she settled herself, Rachel thought again about the outrageous improbability of all that had happened in these last days.  It was beyond belief that she now stood five thousand miles from her home, on a snow-covered hillside, perhaps looking at the outside of a cave where one of the greatest lost treasures of antiquity might be hidden.  It was beyond belief that some chance or blind force had put her, a small town girl from the United States, in a position to claim fantastic wealth and status in such a find. 

And so in her fatigue from the day’s work and the dizzy rush of the thousands of miles she had come in the past week she began to see that it was all surely for naught.  That this would come to nothing.  That she would leave here without treasure, wealth or newfound status and that she would never find herself on an economic plane with Jacob and thus never be able to accept and encourage his attentions.  She sagged against the tree and hung her head while the two leaders walked toward an opening, no bigger than a washtub, at the very base of the rock face, at the very depth of its bite into the hillside.

The two men shed their rucksacks and fished out from them strap-on headlamps and, one by one, went prone on the snow and wiggled through the opening.  They were out of sight for what seemed like a long time but when they reappeared they nodded enthusiastically and spoke loudly to John Cavendish who explained to the group that this was indeed the cave they were seeking.

Now emotion rose in Rachel again.  How could she have doubted?  This trip she was on was surely nothing of her own effort, nothing of her own desire or imagining.  Some force was at work here.  Something that she did not earn or merit but was working for her nonetheless.  This must be grace.  This was the tide of life that Jacob had set himself sailing on so many years ago.  This was just one more chapter in the life he had inherited when he had given up his own will and opened his heart and mind to what life had to offer him.  This flood of fortune was now coming to her.

The two men scraped away ice and snow above the low opening and exposed a joint between two great boulders that lay against the stone face of the outcropping and atop the crawl-hole they had just come through.  The seam between the two great stones was even and straight, like it was the work of a mason.  They took handfuls of plastic explosive from their packs and stashed it in yellow gobs here and there along the seams between the two boulders and the hillside behind.  The entire group then headed back into the woods and down the hillside until the opening was long out of sight.  Then the leader’s friend touched the screen of his phone three times and they heard the explosion and then the echo in the valley below and then the rain of shattered stone dropping through the brittle branches on the hilltop above.

They returned to the hilltop and the two leaders entered through the blown-open passageway that was now large enough for them to go through standing up.  They disappeared into the dark opening and in moments emerged and motioned to the group to come ahead.

They retrieved their rucksacks and gave each of the four a headlamp and they strapped their rucksacks again to their backs led the way back to the opening.

The six of them walked wordlessly in single file, turning left and right along the narrow passage, their headlights casting beams at random angles along the walls of the cave.  They crossed through inch-deep water and into a wide, high-ceilinged room where their footsteps echoed.  The two leaders took lanterns from their rucksacks and set them on the floor of the cave and lit them and then took them up and walked the perimeter of the great room, looking for treasure or some passageway into a deeper chamber.   Rachel stood still near the entrance to this chamber and followed the light of the two men who rounded the room.   She was outside of the glow of the lantern and thus able to see more clearly than he who carried it what the light revealed.  She saw the black shadow of the ancient cart before he did.  Its straight lines, vertical and horizontal, were in unmistakable contrast to the contours of the cave walls.  She thought that the leader might actually run into the cart and, forgetting the language barrier, called out “Stop.”  The leader turned toward her, startled, and then John Cavendish, who had also made out the lines of the cart, spoke to the leader in German and the leader set his lantern on the floor of the cave and turned the beam of his headlamp onto the cart and surveyed the medieval conveyance and ran his hand along its empty bed.  He then set the lantern onto the bed of the ancient, wooden vehicle so that all could see what had been hidden from the world for half a millennium.

Four waist-high,wood-spoked wheels and a flat, wooden bed maybe six feet long and four feet wide and completely devoid of any evidence of cargo, any evidence of packing crates or cases.  Nothing but wood.  

They found eighteen in all; all of them identical in size and condition and all of them identically barren.  They went to their knees and searched the damp floor of the room and found not a single dropped coin, no lost diamond or sapphire or silver bracelet or ring or sword, no artifact that had escaped the scavenging of generations of spelunking locals.  All had been taken.  All was lost.

Rachel fought back tears and could not bring herself to look at Jacob. The carts would have some historical significance, he and John Cavendish agreed, but they would have no value on the private market and almost no value to the remaining Habsburgs.  Their trip back to the car was almost wordless.  They shushed back down the hollows like so many mimes and at the end shed their skis and boots and arranged themselves in the Range Rover the same as before and drove back to the house, this time in no hurry.

But they did not stop at the house.  They drove on a few miles into a little town where they found service for their cell phones.  John Cavendish called his office to begin the process of notifying the proper authorities about finding the carts.  Rachel took out her own phone and found a message from Brad Dawson.  She clicked it open and listened:

“Hey, Rachel.  I’m sorry to bother you like this but you need to know this right now.  When I pulled that metal plate off the wall in the basement I found an abnormality in the wall.  What it looks to me like is that whole wall – almost the whole side there under the stairs – has been rebuilt.  And whoever rebuilt it didn’t know what they were doing or they were in hurry or something.  Bottom line: this is a load-bearing wall and it’s weak.  It’s already bowed out so bad you can see it.   It can’t be left alone.  I’ve got it stanchioned up right now all along the girders and the joists but it can’t be left that way.  This is going to be major.  Might almost double the cost.  I wish I could make this sound better, but this place is going to crumble if we don’t rebuild that wall.   I can’t carry the cost of doing it, either.  You’re going to have to find a way.”

Copyright 2018

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Inside the Cavern

As they neared the top of the hill they came out from under the forest and stood before a great rock face that arched back into the hillside like the end of some huge stadium.  Rachel stood now in the snow above her boots and took advantage of the moment’s rest.  Her feet ached from the ski boots and her legs ached from the morning’s arduous trek.   She drank from a canteen, then backed down to the treeline and leaned against the trunk of a beech while the two men who led the group spoke to each other and motioned to one spot and another in the rock face. 

When she settled herself, Rachel thought again about the outrageous improbability of all that had happened in these last days.  It was beyond belief that she now stood five thousand miles from her home, on a snow-covered hillside, perhaps looking at the outside of a cave where one of the greatest lost treasures of antiquity might be hidden.  It was beyond belief that some chance or blind force had put her, a small town girl from the United States, in a position to claim fantastic wealth and status in such a find. 

And so in her fatigue from the day’s work and the dizzy rush of the thousands of miles she had come in the past week she began to see that it was all surely for naught.  That this would come to nothing.  That she would leave here without treasure, wealth or newfound status and that she would never find herself on an economic plane with Jacob and thus never be able to accept and encourage his attentions.  She sagged against the tree and hung her head while the two leaders walked toward an opening, no bigger than a washtub, at the very base of the rock face, at the very depth of its bite into the hillside.

The two men shed their rucksacks and fished out from them strap-on headlamps and, one by one, went prone on the snow and wiggled through the opening.  They were out of sight for what seemed like a long time but when they reappeared they nodded enthusiastically and spoke loudly to John Cavendish who explained to the group that this was indeed the cave they were seeking.

Now emotion rose in Rachel again.  How could she have doubted?  This trip she was on was surely nothing of her own effort, nothing of her own desire or imagining.  Some force was at work here.  Something that she did not earn or merit but was working for her nonetheless.  This must be grace.  This was the tide of life that Jacob had set himself sailing on so many years ago.  This was just one more chapter in the life he had inherited when he had given up his own will and opened his heart and mind to what life had to offer him.  This flood of fortune was now coming to her.

The two men scraped away ice and snow above the low opening and exposed a joint between two great boulders that lay against the stone face of the outcropping and atop the crawl-hole they had just come through.  The seam between the two great stones was even and straight, like it was the work of a mason.  They took handfuls of plastic explosive from their packs and stashed it in yellow gobs here and there along the seams between the two boulders and the hillside behind.  The entire group then headed back into the woods and down the hillside until the opening was long out of sight.  Then the leader’s friend touched the screen of his phone three times and they heard the explosion and then the echo in the valley below and then the rain of shattered stone dropping through the brittle branches on the hilltop above.

They returned to the hilltop and the two leaders entered through the blown-open passageway that was now large enough for them to go through standing up.  They disappeared into the dark opening and in moments emerged and motioned to the group to come ahead.

They retrieved their rucksacks and gave each of the four a headlamp and they strapped their rucksacks again to their backs led the way back to the opening.

The six of them walked wordlessly in single file, turning left and right along the narrow passage, their headlights casting beams at random angles along the walls of the cave.  They crossed through inch-deep water and into a wide, high-ceilinged room where their footsteps echoed.  The two leaders took lanterns from their rucksacks and set them on the floor of the cave and lit them and then took them up and walked the perimeter of the great room, looking for treasure or some passageway into a deeper chamber.   Rachel stood still near the entrance to this chamber and followed the light of the two men who rounded the room.   She was outside of the glow of the lantern and thus able to see more clearly than he who carried it what the light revealed.  She saw the black shadow of the ancient cart before he did.  Its straight lines, vertical and horizontal, were in unmistakable contrast to the contours of the cave walls.  She thought that the leader might actually run into the cart and, forgetting the language barrier, called out “Stop.”  The leader turned toward her, startled, and then John Cavendish, who had also made out the lines of the cart, spoke to the leader in German and the leader set his lantern on the floor of the cave and turned the beam of his headlamp onto the cart and surveyed the medieval conveyance and ran his hand along its empty bed.  He then set the lantern onto the bed of the ancient, wooden vehicle so that all could see what had been hidden from the world for half a millennium.

Four wood-spoked wheels and a flat, wooden bed maybe six feet long and four feet wide and completely devoid of any evidence of cargo, any evidence of packing crates or cases.  Nothing but wood.  

They found eighteen in all; all of them identical in size and condition and all of them identically barren.  They went to their knees and searched the damp floor of the room and found not a single dropped coin, no lost diamond or sapphire or silver bracelet or ring or sword, no artifact that had escaped the scavenging of generations of spelunking locals.  All had been taken.  All was lost.

Rachel fought back tears and could not bring herself to look at Jacob. The carts would have some historical significance, he and John Cavendish agreed, but they would have no value on the private market and almost no value to the remaining Habsburgs.  Their trip back to the car was almost wordless.  They shushed back down the hollows like so many mimes and at the end shed their skis and boots and arranged themselves in the Range Rover the same as before and drove back to the house, this time in no hurry.

But they did not stop at the house.  They drove on a few miles into a little town where they found service for their cell phones.  John Cavendish called his office to begin the process of notifying the proper authorities about finding the carts.  Rachel took out her own phone and found a message from Brad Dawson.  She clicked it open and listened:

“Hey, Rachel.  I’m sorry to bother you like this but you need to know this right now.  When I pulled that metal plate off the wall in the basement I found an abnormality in the wall.  What it looks to me like is that whole wall – almost the whole side there under the stairs – has been rebuilt.  And whoever rebuilt it didn’t know what they were doing or they were in hurry or something.  Bottom line: this is a load-bearing wall and it’s weak.  It’s already bowed out so bad you can see it.   It can’t be left alone.  I’ve got it stanchioned up right now all along the girders and the joists but it can’t be left that way.  This is going to be major.  Might almost double the cost.  I wish I could make this sound better, but this place is going to crumble if we don’t rebuild that wall.   I can’t carry the cost of doing it, either.  You’re going to have to find a way.”

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Waking in The Eifel Uplands

Rachel woke early and saw that the window beside her bed stood halfway open and a pitcher and basin and soap and towels had been put on the marble-topped dresser.   The long woolens she had bought yesterday in Brussels had been washed and dried and were hanging on hooks on the front of the wardrobe. She rose, shut the window and then looked out it at the bright,snow-covered fields and the bare trees on the hills that rose in the distance.   The water in the pitcher was still warm and she washed her face and hands and brushed her hair and dressed and made her bed and folded her nightgown and laid it across the bed.  She opened her bedroom door and caught the aroma of the morning’s coffee and the breakfast rolls just taken from the oven.

The dining room was bright with the sunlight flooding through the row of east-facing windows and the rest of her party was already at the table with two other tall young men, both of them bearded.  She brought her coffee from the stove, seated herself,  and took rolls from a bowl and sausage from a platter and listened without understanding as the two men spoke with John Cavendish in German.  Before breakfast was finished the two girls who had worked the kitchen last evening entered through the back door and knocked the snow from their boots and put on their aprons and cleared away the breakfast dishes and brought in a platter of dark chocolate bars.

In a low voice, Janet, who sat next to her said “These men are our guides.”

The six of them piled into a long, red Range Rover on top ofwhich were racked six sets of cross-country skis and poles.  They drove away at a speed that alarmed Rachel,across the snow and towards the distant hills without the slightest evidence of a roadway beneath them.  John Cavendish sat beside the driver and held the map that Rachel had found in the old mansion and now and then pointed to some feature in the landscape and spoke to thedriver.  

The first evidence Rachel saw of any roadway was a stone,one-lane bridge that crossed a swollen creek flowing from a hollow between wooded hills.  They parked just on the other side of the bridge and the driver’s friend took a case of boots from a frame at the back of the vehicle and set it in the snow beside the car and then, facing the passengers, one by one, he spoke a single word of English:“Size?”

They were soon outfitted and the two bearded men put on heavy rucksacks and handed them each another bar of chocolate and broke a trail along the creek and into thehollow.  The others followed in their tracks.

They pushed on and up through the hollow and past one, two and then a third fork in the narrowing stream until they reached a place at the bottom of another hill where the stream was born in a laughing gush rising from a stone mouth at the tree line.   John Cavendishtook the map from his vest and held it before the leader and the leader pointedup the hillside.

They left their skis by the spring and began their hike up the hillside through the trees.  Near the top of the hill there was a stone outcropping that curved back into the hill.  There was an opening big enough to crawl through and the leader and his friend strapped lights to their heads and dropped down into the snow before the opening and wiggled themselves inside.

They were out of sight for what seemed like a long time but when they reappeared they nodded enthusiastically and spoke loudly to John Cavendish who explained to the group that this was indeed the cave they were seeking.

The two men scraped away ice and snow from around the opening and exposed a joint between two great boulders that lay against the stone face of the outcropping and above the crawl-hole they had just come through.  The seam between the two great stones was even and straight, like it was the work of a mason.  They took handfuls of plastic explosive from their packs and stashed it in yellow gobs here and there along the seams between the boulders and the hillside. The entire group then headed back into the woods and down the hillside until the opening was long out of sight. Then the leader’s friend touched the screen of his phone three times and they heard the explosion and then the rain of shattered stone.

When they returned to the hilltop they saw that the opening was now large enough for them to walk through upright.  The guides gave strap-on headlamps to each of them and they all went inside and followed turns in the cavern until they came to a great room where stood the ruins of eighteen ancient carts, all of them empty.

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The Streets of Baltimore


Posted on December 6, 2018by labeak52

One of the charms of country music is its economy of expression.  A great country song expresses complex emotions in simple words and accessible metaphors: “Your love is colder than a foggy river, rollin’ over a heart of stone.” 

In the past few days – I don’t really know why – I have been thinking again about a country song I first heard long ago when I was listening a lot to Gram Parsons records.  The Gram Parsons story is a tragic, fascinating one. I am tempted even now to start telling it, but this post is about a song: “The Streets of Baltimore.”

Parsons didn’t write this song.  It was written in 1966 by Tompall Glaser and Harlan Howard.  It starts like this:

Well, I sold the farm to take my woman where she longed to be
We left our kin and all our friends back there in Tennessee
Then I bought those one way tickets she had often begged me for
And they took us to the streets of Baltimore

This isn’t just another old country song.  There are so many universal themes packed into these first few lines.  The first one is the notion of property; of ownership. Our storyteller begins by telling us that he “sold the farm.” Does that sound a bit dry?  It’s not. One of the ideas that this song implies – and the that the bloody revolutions of the 20th century proved, over and over again – is that there is a relationship between private property and freedom; between private property and dignity; between private property and sane living.

In this recent conversation between Tucker Carlson and Ben Shapiro, Carlson says, without objection from Shapiro, that the Bolshevik revolution in Russia and the seventy-year social and economic nightmare that followed was the result of the government’s failure to properly negotiate the transition from an agrarian to an industrial economy.  It wasn’t so much that the landowners there “sold” their farms, rather, they were commandeered by the revolution. But the result is the same – misery and servitude. Nothing got better for anybody.

Here in Appalachia the idea of separating the land from the people who lived on it was given a kind of twist.  The big money guys from up north didn’t exactly buy the land. Rather, they found a way to separate the wealth and resources of the land – the mineral rights – from the surface.  The locals sold the mineral rights for next to nothing and untold wealth was extracted from their counties, leaving them with nothing to show for it but ruin.

In the song the man voluntarily relinquishes his property.  Why he does so opens other universal themes. Here are two: the relationship between men and women and the idea of discernment or ordinal thinking.  The Bible tells us that we are to have our minds renewed so that we may know what is good and true and noble. This song tells the story – a story lived by millions – of decisions made by that mind that is not renewed and that is dazzled by what the Bible calls “the world.”

Here are the next few lines:

Well her heart was filled with gladness when she saw those city lights
She said that the prettiest place on earth is Baltimore at night

What we have here is a blatant lack of such discernment.  It’s not hard to imagine someone really believing what the woman in the song believes and it is just as easy to see that such a belief indicates a superficial understanding of the world.  She thinks she is more sophisticated than she really is. Even if we accept the idea that beauty is to be found in the skyline of a city, there are dozens of city skylines that put Baltimore to shame.  More importantly, there is a good argument that the farm in Tennessee, be it ever so humble, had about it a beauty that could put the restless skyline of Baltimore to shame. That beauty – the beauty of the farm – is the beauty of home, of community, of long, steady relationships, and of a humane economy.

What happens to the man in Baltimore?

Well I got myself a factory job, I ran an old machine
And we bought a little cottage in a neighborhood serene
And then every night when I’d come home with every muscle sore
She’d drag me through the streets of Baltimore

Rod Dreher blogs incisively about our modern dilemma.  Recently he quoted a long letter from a woman – the “Weary Ghost” – who had in her own way taken to the streets of Baltimore.  She had left home and family and spent her youth pursuing a career in the city and had come up empty. She is nearing the end of her fertility and she is childless and without substantial wealth or deep relationships of any kind.  One of Rod’s readers wrote her a letter of advice. Her first tip? Move back closer to your family.

This song is a masterpiece.  It tells a story of the tensions between men and women; between home and community and the faster, brighter life of the faraway city.   On a universal scale, this song “tells it how it is.”

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The Streets of Baltimore

One of the charms of country music is its economy of expression.  A great country song expresses complex emotions in simple words and accessible metaphors: “Your love is colder than a foggy river, rollin’ over a heart of stone.”

In the past few days – I don’t really know why – I have been thinking again about a country song I first heard long ago when I was listening a lot to Gram Parsons records.  The Gram Parsons story is a tragic, fascinating one. I am tempted even now to start telling it, but this post is about a song: “The Streets of Baltimore.”

Parsons didn’t write this song.  It was written in 1966 by Tompall Glaser and Harlan Howard.  It starts like this:

Well, I sold the farm to take my woman where she longed to be
We left our kin and all our friends back there in Tennessee
Then I bought those one way tickets she had often begged me for
And they took us to the streets of Baltimore


This isn’t just another old country song.  There are so many universal themes packed into these first few lines.  The first one is the notion of property; of ownership. Out storyteller begins by telling us that he “sold the farm.” Does that sound a bit dry?  It’s not. One of the ideas that this song implies – and the that the bloody revolutions of the 20th century proved, over and over again – is that there is a relationship between private property and freedom; between private property and dignity; between private property and sane living.

In this recent conversation between Tucker Carlson and Ben Shapiro, Carlson says, without objection from Shapiro, that the Bolshevik revolution in Russia and the seventy-year social and economic nightmare that followed was the result of the government’s failure to properly negotiate the transition from an agrarian to an industrial economy.  It wasn’t so much that the landowners there “sold” their farms, rather, they were commandeered by the revolution. But the result is the same – misery and servitude. Nothing got better for anybody.

Here in Appalachia the idea of separating the land from the people who lived on it was given a kind of twist.  The big money guys from up north didn’t exactly buy the land. Rather, they found a way to separate the wealth and resources of the land – the mineral rights – from the surface.  The locals sold the mineral rights for next to nothing and untold wealth was extracted from their counties, leaving them with nothing to show for it but ruin.

In the song the man voluntarily relinquishes his property.  Why he does so opens other universal themes. Here are two: the relationship between men and women and the idea of discernment or ordinal thinking.  The Bible tells us that we are to have our minds renewed so that we may know what is good and true and noble. This song tells the story – a story lived by millions – of decisions made by that mind that is not renewed and that is dazzled by what the Bible calls “the world.”

Here are the next few lines:

Well her heart was filled with gladness when she saw those city lights
She said that the prettiest place on earth is Baltimore at night


What we have here is a blatant lack of such discernment.  It’s not hard to imagine someone really believing what teh woman in the song believes and it is just as easy to see that such a belief indicates a superficial understanding of the world.  She thinks she is more sophisticated than she really is. Even if we accept the idea that beauty is to be found in the skyline of a city, there are dozens of city skylines that put Baltimore to shame.  More importantly, there is a good argument that the farm in Tennessee, be it ever so humble, had about it a beauty that could put the restless skyline of Baltimore to shame. That beauty – the beauty of the farm – is the beauty of home, of community, of long, steady relationships, and of a humane economy.

What happens to the man in Baltimore?

Well I got myself a factory job, I ran an old machine
And we bought a little cottage in a neighborhood serene
And then every night when I’d come home with every muscle sore
She’d drag me through the streets of Baltimore


Rod Dreher blogs incisively about our modern dilemma.  Recently he quoted a long letter from a woman – the “Weary Ghost” – who had in her own way taken to the streets of Baltimore.  She had left home and family and spent her youth pursuing a career in the city and had come up empty. She is nearing the end of her fertility and she is childless and without substantial wealth or deep relationships of any kind.  One of Rod’s readers wrote her a letter of advice. Her first tip? Move back closer to your family.

This song is a masterpiece.  It tells a story of the tensions between men and women; between home and community and the faster, brighter life of the faraway city.   On a universal scale, this song “tells it how it is.”

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(And now for) The Rest Of The Story

My last few posts have been segments from my novel in (very slow) progress.  If you’ve read these late posts, you may want to get a taste of what came before to familiarize yourself with the story and the characters.  This whole project began with a short story I wrote years ago about an old mansion in the town where I live.  To get to that story, click here.

The novel itself begins with a look at Rachel Thompson only days after the death of her husband, John.  To get there, click here.   This bit is followed by a telephone conversation between Rachel and her friend Susan that you can read by clicking here.

Here is the chapter where Rachel actually buys the house. 

There is a back story in the book.  The way the mansion came to be built is an important part of the story.  The was a guy named William “ISaac” Martin who made his fortune in the timber business in the early part of the 20th century.  For a bit of his story, click here 

Mr Martin finds his way to Austria, through a business connection with WK Vanderbilt (a real, historical person) and there he meets Rebecca with whom he falls in love and for whom he builds the mansion back in the United States.  To read of the lover’s first meeting, click here.

In order to marry Rebecca and bring her to the United States, Isaac Martin must meet the approval of her aunt, one Bertha Von Suttner (also a real person, the author of the world-famous novel “Lay Down Your Arms” and Nobel-Prize winner).  For their conversation, click here.

And here

To get the back story of the relationship between Rachel and Jacob Eaton, click here.

Thats all I have time to put together right now.  More soon.

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