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The simplicity of life by a stream…

John Lamont, 2, plays in a water sprinkler, Friday, June 26, 2009, in Decatur, Ill.  (Kelly Huff / Associated Press)
John Lamont, 2, plays in a water sprinkler, Friday, June 26, 2009, in Decatur, Ill. (Kelly Huff / Associated Press)

Good morning, Netizens...

Now, staggering and weaving from beneath our collective load of discord, grief and strife, tinged with the certainty beyond all credible doubt that all of us will die someday, we have finally reached Sunday. It is festooned before us, dressed gaudily in bright spring flowers and tall roses blossoming from the trellis across the front entry to the Virtual Ballroom while overhead, the first vestiges of infant bird life scream from atop every bush and tree, hungry for their meal. You could not, in sensible mind, ask for a more beautiful day than we have today. Now watch some misguided politician, public servant or bureaucrat come along and destroy it with the creation of some half-baked plan designed to either enrich themselves at the public expense, or prevent us from enjoying the bounty of the day.

Let us agree I have not been overawed by summer this or any other year, for no sooner than I begin to relish the gentle breezes of summer, they turn into winds that blow wildfires incredibly out of control and people lose their dreams in the smoke. Yet when the Lady I call summer reclines against the brick wall outside the Virtual Ballroom, indolently letting her hair fall down in passionate luster across the lands, and in the quiet summer sunsets when she strolls through the verdant farms and fields and for once, the wheat stands tall, not flattened by winds and hail, I see and feel her most dearly. For there is nothing more sacred than sitting upon a rock that has been in the same place since before the time of Christ, watching the sunset of a perfect summer day as it ripples, gamboling among the ferns and water grasses along the river's edge.

For there is a part of me that truly loathes the city. Rather than swim in a chlorine saturated swimming pool among people, most of whom have never dived into a backwoods pool where moss and frogs all dwell, I would rather do cannonballs off an old farmer's bridge and take my chances with the snakes and various forms of wildlife I might chance to encounter. I never dreamed nor conceived of life while sitting in a swimming pool, but laying beneath an old bridge in the shade, escaping a scorching hot summer day and swimming in a mud-bottom pond. Of course, life was much simpler then than now.

If you chance to ask an adolescent kid from the city, “What kind of tree is that over there?” the chances are better than not they probably do not know, or if you ask them, “What kind of a plant is that, growing there along the water's edge”, the chances are few of them ever had aunts or uncles that knew the land so well as to tell them how to create honeysuckle wine or when to harvest wild cherries from along the fence rows in the summer to make a perfect pie.

I fear I am working too hard. For a man in his mid-sixties, I probably need to seriously consider slowing down, resting more often between major undertakings. However, there is so much more I wish to see, particularly in summer when the love of the land is there, waiting to be bestowed upon anyone who daydreams when they wander in the fields or laughs along the quiet little streams that chatter obliquely to themselves.


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Spokesman-Review readers blog about news and issues in Spokane written by Dave Laird.