Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The River




Though we don't see the river from our house, it's an abiding presence in our lives. To get, well, almost anywhere, we have to cross the river. I love the sight of it and it always shows up somewhere in my books.
from Signs in the Blood -- Little Sylvie at the river:

I looked at the river, runnin there so fast beneath the bridge. Teacher had showed us on a great map how a flatboat could go down this same river into Tennessee, on to Alabama, back to Tennessee and Kentucky all the way to the Ohio River and from there to the mighty Mississippi and right smack down to New Orleans. And in New Orleans, she told us, you can get on a ship that can take you right around this world.

It seemed a marvel to me that his same water I was lookin at would travel so far while I stayed put. I thought how I would like to go on one of them boats and see all them places . . .

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10 comments:

Tammy said...

Hi Vicki,
It's the same way here--we live in a 'horseshoe bend' of the river, and while you can't see it, I can hear it when it's flooding, and have to cross it often. Sunday, I took lonely Boone and myself for a short trip down to William's Ford, part of the river we kids used as our swimming hole. I hadn't been there in a few years (to get out and poke around) and was amazed at how much the contours had changed--old swimming holes filled in deep, pathways alongside dissapeared. After that we went to Indian Creek, which empties into the river and was our 'first' swimming hole. Just something about being near the water is calming and makes normal things seem mystic. It was funny seeing your post, as I'm getting ready to post pictures and thoughts about our little river trip. :-)
Tammy

Carol @ TheWritersPorch said...

That French Broad is a beauty!Lucky you getting to cross it and enjoy it so often.

willow said...

Oh, your river is glorious and looks so blue, too. We live along the Scioto, which we can see from the second story in the winter, when the trees are bare. It's never blue, though, just muddy brown-green.

Vicki Lane said...

Tammy -- I think that in the hot time of year there's something incredibly appealing about a river -- about imagining yourself drifting down it . . . Probably why we both chose to write about it now.

Carol and Willow -- it's a real beauty -- too fast moving to swim in but beloved of rafters and kayakers. And always a visual treat.

Prospero said...

I fully understand the enticing charm of a river. We are made of water and are inexorably drawn to it.

Vicki Lane said...

Thanks for stopping by, Prospero! I enjoyed my visit to your blog and your amazing photos.

Victoria said...

Gorgeous river! We have to cross over a small bridge to get to our cottage, but our stream is only about 20 feet wide. Fortunately, it's not a far drop from the bridge to the stream (only about 9 feet) because in 1995 my husband was driving my beloved old 1978 Blazer across it and it collapsed! I forget what it cost to rebuild our bridge, but it cost $10,000 to heal my darling.

My husband wasn't hurt. Well, not in the accident anyway... ;-D

Vicki Lane said...

Ouch! And do you still have the Blazer? )I'm assuming you kept the husband.)

Something I learned when we were in England a few years ago and saw what I would call a stream described as rivers -- a river is defined by its length, not its breadth. Maybe your stream is really a river!

Victoria said...

Oh yes, I still have my darling Big Betsy Blazer! And, after considerable deliberations, I kept my husband, too. I joke that he's my second, and MAYBE final husband. Of course, since we've been married for over 30 years, I think he's pretty sure he's "finalized."

I never knew that that a river was determined to actually be a river by its length and not its breadth. Interesting!

Vicki Lane said...

Disclaimer: Well, that's just one of those bits of info floating around in my head which I have no way of verifying. But I know that in England there were some pretty puny things which were labeled rivers. Maybe the info came from one of the guidebooks.