Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Houses come and houses go . . .

NOTE: My apologies for last night's truncated post; I got in a struggle with Blogger after some way getting started writing ABOVE the photo and not being able to move it down. Then I gave up and went merrily to bed. 

My Great-Grandfather used to live here in a sort of duplex with separate quarters for his first wife, Keziah Jane Butler Redd and my grandmother, Sariah Louisa Chamberlain Redd, daughter of Samuel Chamberlain.
(Have you put any of your ancestors up on Findagrave.com?) I think this is a hayfield now and I seem to remember that that is a remnant of an orchard on the far side. When I looked at the early records of the settlement, some books, some microfilm, I found that the best near-the-creek land was taken up by John D. Lee (Remember John D. Lee? He was scapegoated into being the only one punished for the Mountain Meadows Massacre) and my grandfather had to get some land that was not quite as desirable. This was at a time when Brigham Young wanted Southern Utah settled; these people were participants in that effort.

I took this picture at the 2011 Redd Reunion in Harmony, Utah. Lots of my cousins were there---about 500 of Lemuel Redd's descendants. Since I was raised hearing about this early Mormon polygamous setup, it has always seemed pretty "normal" to me, and more like a historical curiosity I didn't have to take a moral position on. Plenty of other stuff to fuss about--you might have noticed that. The house isn't there any more, and Mormons generally stick to one wife at a time now.

Tonight's poem, December, is from Hilda Morley's book, To Hold in My Hand; selected poems 1955-1983, Sheep Meadow Press, 1983, page 149.


                   If there were a blessing
outside us
               it would be the falling
of the snow
of movement        quiet
of decision
                               a clearness
            a movement
of lightness
                         Inside us it grows deeper;

                                       Hilda Morley,   New York, 1959

This quiet poem is quite like snowfall, I think, I love the way it flows across the page. I want to work like this. I love the music of the poem, the gentleness of the sounds. Perhaps it is snowing now, where you are in the month of December.

No comments:

Post a Comment