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Turning Points

06/17/08 5:55PM By Howard Coffin
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What the doctor's slight change of expression implied, and the machine confirmed, was that I'm not immortal, after all. 'Twas a turning point, so, henceforth.

I will drive even more back roads and watch the mountains' moods match the music of my radio.

I will head for Dead Creek when I hear a thousand geese are down.

I'll slog again to the back side of that Berlin swamp where beavers swim, and ducks land. Hunting? I only kill Budweisers.

Still more time will I devote to the meaningful experience of pocket billiards, and try to ambush that slick stranger who's been hustling the lads at Ashley's Tavern.

A Sibelieus symphony at Saratoga? I'm gone.

You've got a Civil War site, in Canaan? Pownal? Here I come.

There's that old pull of the battlefields again. Fredericksburg, Antietam, Brandy Station. I'm on the way.

The book may take a little longer than I thought. That meeting? May not make it.

I've got some things to say about why most Americans vote for their worst enemies, about saving what's left of this battered Vermont landscape.

As for treasure? I seek the silver in an upland morning, the gold behind the Green Mountains when at close of day, they become for an instant, the rim of my world.

I will love that well, and the lady of my lifetime, ere long, ere long.

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