Said and Done

Said & Done: Some hunting dogs get lost, others just take off

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Halfway between Brattleboro and Bennington, somewhat north of the Molly Stark Trail, there stands a dead pine tree. It is not alone. It is distinguished, however, by a weathered board bearing this notice: “Lost — beagle hunting dog.” A telephone number (Worcester) tells where to be in touch with the dog’s owner. In my many hunts where that pine tree stands its vigil, the sign has not been taken down. … 0

Said & Done: A Monhegan Island exploration

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Said & Done this week is written on the occasion of the writer’s 92nd birthday. A year ago, sister Caroline and best friend Poesy Barlow treated me to a saltwater trip from Bar Harbor to Monhegan Island off the coast of Maine. Here is notes of that birthday party. The evening before we … 0

Said and Done: Can a woodchuck swim? Sure!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

According to notes we have here on the building of the Quabbin Reservoir, the main dam was plugged in the summer of 1939 with an immediate effect on the trapped waters of the Swift River. People in the four towns lost to that Boston drinking-water project had moved out — bag and baggage, … 0

Said & Done: Life and foxes

Friday, September 6, 2013

The other day I ran over a chipmunk. It was not a small tragedy. It cost the animal its life. It has caused me considerable anguish. I still feel bad about it. I suppose you could say I hadn’t so much run over the chipmunk is that it … 0

Go where the wild geese go

Saturday, January 12, 2013

The best part of a trip to Boston is the drive back to Greenfield. Not that Boston lacks charm and attraction. It’s a fine place to visit, but you wouldn’t want to live there. It doesn’t matter whether it’s Boston, or any other of our supersize cities, if … 0

A story of death, a story of life

Thursday, March 7, 2013

We pulled the car window down to witness an animal confrontation as funny as it was desperate. Two crows were doing their best to beat a squirrel out of an ear of corn. The squirrel was not to be intimidated. It had salvaged the corn from beneath snow … 0

Beware birdwatching with the experts ... it can be embarrassing

Monday, November 12, 2012

Three pileated woodpeckers flew in a column tracing capital in their undulating flight. One pileated woodpecker at a time is a fair rarity, three is a bonus. That sighting was made several years ago in the course of a hike in Vermont. it was in the fall when … 0

Santa Claus, fire & an ancient tree

Thursday, December 6, 2012

W e got home from church on Christmas Day to find Santa Claus standing on our chimney. From the top of our hill, half a mile away, before we plunged into the valley, we could see him clearly. It was only a glimpse, but enough to persuade us … 0

Voice of Audubon

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Mary Curley had the form and grace of a scrub woman. Her family was what old American gentry used to call “lace-curtain Irish.” Mary Curley rose above impoverished beginnings. She put herself through two years of required “normal school” to earn a teaching certificate, eventually finding a position … 0

Said & Done

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The only thing worse than getting egg on your face is having to eat crow at the same time. Max Zeller once saved us from that embarrassment. You probably did not know Max Zeller. He’s no longer in the land of the living. His kindness years ago is … 0

He lived & died alone, by choice

Thursday, August 1, 2013

When the men in town buried him, they put his meerschaum in the casket with him. Some time in the first quarter of the last century, he came to that small rural town and built a three-room cabin. We saw it before it burned down. It was neat … 0

My name is down for all today’s events

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Editor’s note: An incomplete version of this column ran last month. Here is the complete column. “Full Program”  Great Britain, Punch, 1946 My name is down for all today’s events, the hurdles and the sprints. I’ll not stick at the hundred meters flat, the half-mile dash; I’ll take … 0

To hell in a handbasket? ... why not?

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The character who coined the expression “going to hell in a hand-basket” probably thought of himself as a clever fellow, a linguistic tap-dancer. All we can say is that if hell was his preoccupation, we hope his basket was a single seater. Let’s face it. Given a choice … 0