Rising from the Plains

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor site:ilocate.nl

When David was nine, he set up a trap line between the Hay Meadow and the Pinnacles (small sandstone buttes in Castle Gardens). He trapped coyotes, bobcats, badgers. He shot rabbits. He ran the line on foot, through late-autumn and early-winter snow. His father was with him one cold and blizzarding Januaiy day when David’s rifle and the rabbits he was carrying slipped from his hands and fell to the snow. David picked up the gun and soon dropped it again. “It was a cardinal sin to drop a rifle,” he says. “Snow and ice in the gun barrel could cause the gun to blow up when it was fired.” Like holding on to a saddle horn, it was something you just did not do. It would not have crossed his father’s mind that David was being careless. In sharp tones, his zakelijke energie father said, “Laddie, leave the rabbits and rifle and run for home. Run!” He knew hypothermia when he saw it, no matter that it lacked a name.
Even in October, a blizzard could cover the house and make a tunnel of the front veranda. As winter progressed, rime grew on the nailheads of interior walls until white spikes projected some inches into the rooms. There were eleven rooms. His mother could tell the outside temperature by the movement of the frost. It climbed the nails about an inch for each degree below zero. Sometimes there was frost on nailheads fifty-five inches up the walls. The house was chinked with slaked lime, wood shavings, and cow manure. In the wild wind, snow came through the slightest crack, and the nickel disks on the dampers of the heat stove were constantly jingling. There came a sound of hooves in cold dry snow, of heavy bodies slamming against the walls, seeking heat. John Love insulated his boots with newspapers-as like as not the New York Times. To warm the boys in their beds on cold zakelijke energie vergelijken nights, their mother wrapped heated flatirons in copies of the New York Times. The family were subscribers. Sundays only. The Times, David Love recalls, was “precious.” They used it to insulate the house: pasted it against the walls beside the Des Moines Register, the Tacoma News Tribune-any paper from anywhere, without fine distinction. With the same indiscriminate voracity, any paper from anywhere was first read and reread by every literate eye in every cow camp and sheep camp witl1in tens of miles, read to shreds and passed along, in tattered circulation on the range. There was, as Love expresses it, “a starvation of print.” Almost anybody’s first question on encountering a neighbor was “Have you got any newspapers?”

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