As I’m driving past, speed devilness in spite of, I can see snow still remains in the woods. There are patches here and there, startling whiteness against a carpet of brown leaves. It’s mostly in the hollows where the sun rarely goes.
The winding stone walls that have been there for nearly two hundred years are surrounded by trees where they once marked the edges of pastures and fields, the borderlines of a farm’s property.
During the winter, those walls disappear under a covering of snow, and I almost forget them. But with spring – with spring and in spite of the untouched hollows – they return and I wonder about the people who built them.
There is an old legend about the Roxbury ‘pudding-stone,’ immortalized perhaps in Oliver Wendell Holmes’ poem, “The Dorchester Giant.” Although I have lived in the New England area all my life, I had never heard of this myth or legend until I read Melissa Wiley’s Charlotte books. A fabulous interesting story…
As the poem goes…
What are those lone ones doing now,
The wife and the children sad?
Oh, they are in a terrible rout,
Screaming, and throwing their pudding about,
Acting as they were mad.
They flung it over to Roxbury hills,
They flung it over the plain,
And all over Milton and Dorchester too
Great lumps of pudding the giants threw;
They tumbled as thick as rain.
. . . . .
Giant and mammoth have passed away,
For ages have floated by;
The suet is hard as a marrow-bone,
And every plum is turned to a stone,
But there the puddings lie.
The stone walls in my area may not be made of puddingstone, but when I see them I think of giants – and enormous bowls of pudding.