TribLIVE

| Opinion/The Review

 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Saturday essay: Portrait of a farm

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Letters home ...

Traveling abroad for personal, educational or professional reasons?

Why not share your impressions — and those of residents of foreign countries about the United States — with Trib readers in 150 words?

The world's a big place. Bring it home with Letters Home.

Contact Colin McNickle (412-320-7836 or cmcnickle@tribweb.com).

Daily Photo Galleries

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Friday, March 29, 2013, 8:57 p.m.
 

A friend is contemplating buying an old farm.

But there's some hesitance.

A child fears her parent might become isolated, perhaps disconnected from the world.

But for what else are old farms?

A financial adviser cautions of the vagaries of the modern world; money spent now might be needed later.

But once only we really do live.

The friend revels in the premise of a well-preserved farmstead.

The house is pristine.

The stables, ghostly in their emptiness, would, filled, comfort, not haunt, horse and handler alike.

The acreage itself is a powerful enough elixir, natural and rolling, punctuated here and there only by more nature.

And that pond.

And those swans.

One's very own Walden.

Ah, but didn't Thoreau, in “Walden,” warn that “It makes but little difference whether you are committed to a farm or a county jail”?

Yes. But Thoreau got the “county jail” part as wrong as Whitman got the farm part right in “A Farm Picture”:

Through the ample open door of the peaceful country barn,

A sun-lit pasture field, with cattle and horses feeding;

And haze, and vista, and the far horizon, fading away.

Buy the farm, friend. Buy the farm.

— Colin McNickle

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Editorials

  1. Pittsburgh Tuesday takes
  2. Greensburg Tuesday takes
  3. Alle-Kiski Tuesday takes
  4. The Export-Import Bank: The Senate’s shame
  5. Yes, the IRS targeted conservatives
  6. The wind ruse: A failed policy
  7. At the VA: The waiting dead
  8. The Keystone XL pipeline: No surrender
  9. Connellsville police seek help in crime crackdown
  10. U.N. Watch: The ‘race’ is on
  11. Council fails again: Shoot straight, Ford City