The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Monday and Mount Vernon

Little White Church
By Marilyn Nelson

          Eaton, NH, 1879

Us Free Will Baptists walked a thin tightwire,
a springing path out over the abyss.
We knew how a sudden April desire to dance
can topple you head over heels into the fire.

We knew how warmth exuded by a youth
singing at prayer meeting in a nearby seat
and inhaled deeply can inebriate
you to the point of renouncing the truth.

We lived repent-now-before-it's-too-late.
We didn't believe God forgives you, once and for all.
We knew how you can just turn around and fall,
of your own free will, how easy it is to doubt.

But there's no Free Willers left around this place
since the Phelps boy come back from Harvard talking about Grace.


Sunday was yet another gorgeous day, sunny but not too warm. Paul's parents came over late morning, we picked Adam up from working at Hebrew school, and we spent most of the rest of the day at Mount Vernon, where we ate lunch, toured the house (the dining room is being restored and it was pretty crowded but otherwise very nice), and went to see the piglets, lambs, spring flowers, early vegetables, and the rest of the plants and animals on the farm and in the gardens, plus the threshing barn, slave cabin, gravesites, estate buildings, and river dock. We even had time for the introductory film and the museum!


Paul made peanut soup (a Colonial favorite) plus chicken and potatoes for dinner, and I gave his mother my old Kindle since she has developed an allergy to newsprint and book ink so I figured she would like to have an electronic way to read. After we had brownies for dessert, they went home and we returned Daniel to College Park, we watched Saturday night's episode of Smash because we figure we should see out the series (we only caught part of Once Upon a Time, will have to catch up later in the week). So all in all a very nice Sunday!

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