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The Mossy Stones

Posted by BConk on Wednesday, March 5, 2008

One March day a few years ago I got a notion to take a walk in my neighborhood and think up a poem.  I ended up about a mile away at an old ruined mill at a waterfall almost completely hidden in the woods near the busiest road in town.   I had this poem all but fully formed in my mind by the time I left to walk back home.

The Mossy Stones

The water o'er the mill dam sings
the mossy stones remembering
the days long past when workmen toiled
and from witch hazel brush an essence boiled.

At the head of the long cove a brook it twines
through stones tumbled down from the mountain's spine
it was there that in a bygone day,
a yoke of oxen made their way.

Up the steep defile the wagons creaked
as the water through the sluicegate leaked
and drove a great and oaken wheel
and the bark was torn by teeth of steel.

Long since the cart path's become a road.
Long gone the wagon's brushy load.
Long passed are the men that knew by heart
the old witch hazel miller's art.

I sit now on a granite sill
a broken footing of their mill.
The traffic nearby on the state route whines.
The winter sun through bare trees shines.

The mill pool there before me glistens.
In silent reverie I listen
as the water o'er the mill dam sings
the mossy stones remembering.


5 comments on “The Mossy Stones”

GSCarson Says:
Wednesday, March 5, 2008 @3:41:25 PM

Nice Brian, brings up memories of the limestone streams here in PA that had a lot of mill dams on them in years past; Big Spring, Letort, Green Spring, Silver Spring...... I was waiting for a verse with the brook trout sipping... Glenn C.

HoosierGal Says:
Wednesday, March 5, 2008 @5:22:02 PM

Beautiful image.. it really takes me there. Thanks for sharing Brian.

pstroud1 Says:
Saturday, March 8, 2008 @3:20:11 PM

Great poem Brian. I remember an old mill in Trout Run, PA, where Linda Lou is from Burgers mill. We've caught some nice trout right there.
  We also got married here in TN below a nice griss mill. They are a beautiful place that is fade slowly away.
Thanks, Brian

rendesvous1840 Says:
Saturday, March 15, 2008 @8:59:12 PM

That's a neat poem. Thanks for sharing it.  We have the remains of the company town of the former Jaite Paper Co. here in the Cuyahoga Valley Nat. Park. The mill is gone, and the park owns the land and buildings. The Jaite Paper Co. still exists, a few miles south of their old location. 

Couchie Says:
Tuesday, March 18, 2008 @5:46:04 PM

Maybe we should start that old banjo poem thread back up.....


I love to play the banjo......

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