Oh, good: a poem from you! And this one is wonderfully visual.
So you have found a wise old man who hangs around rivers ringing bells. Your orb and sunburst are perfect companions to this lovely parallel universe you've found.
How I envy you those places to explore!
Our "oldest things" are Indian arrowheads left from the Woodland Indians who first settled this region, long before the Cherokee did.
I'd much prefer finding some Roman glass or a nice aquaduct.
(I have heard that archeologists digging in the area of the ancient Babylonians have found evidence--this is from twenty years ago or so--of arches being built there, predating the Romans! I heard a presentation about this excavation at the Laboratory.)
I hesitated about posting the poem- because it's so old. I'm glad you like it.
The bridge carried one of the canals that made the industrial revolution possible. Cotton was imported from the Southern States into Liverpool and Salford docks, taken up into the hills by canal boat to be processed and then floated back to the ports to be exported world-wide.
There's a lot of industrial archaeology along the Medlock valley. 18th and 19th century ruins as romantic and impressive as anything the Romans left behind.
Maybe this weekend, if my nephew Matthew is back from his trip to Mt. St. Helens, he and Kate and I can plan a photography trip to Jonesboro, the oldest town in our state. There's a Salt House there I think you'd enjoy seeing.
Oh, I can probably find it with Google, but I'd rather have my own slant on it--more fun.
I'll look forward to that.
When I was in Kentucky I visited the abandoned Shaker village at Pleasant Hill. Very pretty.
Mother Ann Lee- the Shaker Prophetess- was a Manchester lass. So many links between here and there!
How funny that I have never heard about the abandoned Shaker village.
I'm still enjoying your poem in my head.
It's run as a heritage site. I remember we were shown round by a nice lady in Shaker costume.
This was over 20 years ago, of course......
They have lovely, simple furniture. Their music is very somber, often being in minor keys.
And that is all I know about Shakers.
"Tis a gift to be simple
Tis a gift to be free,
Tis a gift to come down
Where we ought to be."
They used to dance and sing and "shake" as a way of worshipping God. They practised sexual equality, but also celibacy- which is why, rather sadly, they have died out.
They were a good thing. A Protestant monastic movement.
Indeed! They were not meant to last...too short-sighted.
I suspect that- like today's fundamentalists- the Shakers expected the Second Coming "any time now". In those circumstances it seemed like a waste of time and energy to get married and raise children.
How rueful they must have been, when the last one of them was old, and no one had come to Rapture them up.
The Last Shaker--sounds like a novel.
(But I always think of salt-shakers when I hear about these people...)
I wonder if there are any of them left.
Last time I checked they had been reduced to two very old ladies.
Have you ever heard of the mysterious disappearance of Aimee Semple MacPherson, who founded the Foursquare Gospel Church?
"Aimee Semple MacPherson was a popular revival preacher and faith healer who brought her ministry to Los Angeles in 1923. From her church in Echo Park, she broadcast her services across the country - a precursor to the modern televangelists. In 1926, she disappeared while swimming at Venice Beach. Police were baffled, and huge rewards were offered for clues of her whereabouts. Thirty two days later, she came out of the Arizona desert, claiming to have been kidnapped and held hostage for a month before finally managing to escape. There had indeed been a plot to kidnap MacPherson uncovered in 1925, but many elements of her story did not seem to fit. While MacPherson had disappeared from a beach while clad in a swimsuit, she emerged from the desert fully clothed right down to her old-fashioned corset. The LA district attorney had several witnesses who claimed they had seen MacPherson in local hotels with Kenneth Ormiston, a technician for her church's radio broadcasts. MacPherson stuck to her story, and she was acquitted of perjury. Her popularity suffered no decline, although rumors persisted that she had gone to Mexico for an abortion, or to recover from plastic surgery."
Agatha Christie pulled a very similar stunt. She abandoned her car on a country road and just disappeared. Suicide was suspected.
When she was eventually found- staying in a spa hotel in Yorkshire- she claimed she had suffered from a fit of amnesia.
She never explained herself, but she most probably did it to worry her unfaithful husband.
The name she used to check into the hotel was that of her husband's mistress.
But they have lasted! Sabbathday Lake
is the last surviving Shaker community; it has over a dozen members, and some of them are male and under the age of sixty. *g* They maintain a museum of Shaker life, have done two recordings of traditional Shaker music with the Boston Camerata, and farm 1800 acres of land with orchards, herbs, trees, and some livestock. Go Shakers!
But I'm really pleased to hear that there are still some of them left.
I admire the Shakers- lovely gentle people and so creative with it.