Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Stone wall daydreams

While Michael drove to Connecticut last weekend, I got to be that curious passenger who looks out the window and daydreams. In wooded areas near the highways were long intersecting stone walls in various states of disrepair. Some had partially collapsed, their once clean edges blurred by dead leaves and kudzu, while others were still intact. And if I looked through the woods and past the walls, suburbia loomed. Which made me wonder - who built these walls? A property owner defining the boundaries of his/her land? Must have been a couple generations ago, before this interstate highway pushed through, before the land was sold and cleared for the latest greatest housing subdivision. The land, with its narrow ribbon of trees and stone wall separating the homes from the highway, bears little resemblance to how it once looked.

So my mind starts to wander along those stone walls, imagining the large tracts of land they once defined, the folks who built them, the children who hid behind them and walked along their bumpy tops. Sure, the uneven stones provide hiding places for snakes and other critters, but they'd also make a great place to hide trinkets. My imagination is off and running toward a new historical fiction story - with something hidden in a stone wall.


  1. I have always had a fascination with stone walls and stone houses. When I do finally start to build on my own land, I plan to have stone walls and fences. I love working with stone and building the walls and I've even thought about building my own stone house before.

  2. There's such a rustic beauty in them, Dale. Stone houses are magnificent.
    There's a stone wall at the back of our property, still a clear divider between our land and our neighbor's. It looks quite natural there - it still belongs, still has a purpose. The ones I saw last weekend were different. They no longer divided lands, they didn't act as a barrier to errant farm animals or children. Their function was long over; they were probably only there because no one could be bothered tearing them down. They'd outlived their usefulness. To me, that plight added more interest, beauty, and mystery to them.

  3. It's odd that something so timeless and resistant to the ages could outlive their usefulness.

  4. There must be many a story hidden in those stones
    walls Jeanne....you go girl!

  5. Thanks for the encouragement, Lisa. This idea is on the back burner for a few weeks while I work through edits on my historical fiction novel.