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Little Cove house brought him back to nature

March 08, 2001

Little Cove house brought him back to nature



The house at 1875 Ward Drive in Little Cove, Pa., is alive with the sounds of nature.

William A. Cole of Greencastle, Pa., recalls them fondly, especially those of the whippoorwills and owls.

"Those sounds came back to me from when I was a kid on a farm," said Cole, 76, who was raised in Shady Gap, Pa.

Cole and his wife, Catherine, owned the Franklin County getaway from 1975 until December 2000.

They spent weekends there with their sons, Terry and Steven, now in their 40s.

The more than 50 acres of land around the little wooden house with a dirt basement were prime for hunting.

Before the family got used to the place, the sounds surrounding it were unsettling.

"We were hearing noises we'd never heard before," Cole said, such as limbs or entire trees falling in the middle of the night.

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Over time, the noises became treasured, so much so that Cole was inspired to write a poem in the late 1970s about them called "Mountain Sounds."

Cole said his favorite season at the house was, "The time of the year the frogs are singing."

Sometimes nature was unfriendly or unwelcome.

Raccoons "raised heck" on the corn they raised there, Cole said. Snakes loomed under the porch, in the woodpile and in the garden.

Inside, the home was occasionally a haven for wasps and flying squirrels. And once, he discovered that a black snake was crawling around in the walls.

"I'd rather have him around than the mice," Cole said.

There were plenty of pleasant encounters with creatures of the wild.

Seeing the swallows swoop and the bats hunting for bugs was fun, as was feeding the deer.

As Cole's poem states, "Mother Nature gives all."

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