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Letters to the Editor - June 23

June 22, 2011

Remember: We are guests on this planet



To the editor:

During his late and retiring years in Independence, Mo., former President Harry S Truman would take daily walks with a Presbyterian minister friend. They traversed a common route each day, always near a gingko tree. Each time they neared this tree, Truman would stop, then walk over to the tree and say: “You’re doing a good job.”

In the made-for-television drama “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman,” the elderly woman explains why she talks to a tree. She says: “When you talk to an old oak tree that’s been here for all these years, and knows more than you’ll ever know, it’s not craziness, it is just nobility you respect.”

I weep inside when I see areas of nature that are being transfigured, uprooted and pulverized for economic gain. I know we are to use the land, till it and enjoy it for needful purposes. But to ravage the good Earth is something quite different. And we do it well. Tree and land morphology is our game these days, or so it seems. We are often bent on paving everything, afraid of the ancient stones that lie beneath our feet. Addicted to sheer economic values, we race into a future, tearing away the home nature provides us. W.H. Auden, the 20th century’s premier poet, said this about us over 50 years ago:  “… Here were we decent, godless people. Our only monument, the asphalt road and ten thousand lost golf balls.”

We have forgotten that we are guests on planet Earth. The forests and fields are not ours to domineer, but to companion, caress and enjoy. Washington County, Md., is so very beautiful. Many spots are theaters of grace, nourishing the souls of all inhabitants, human and otherwise. Perhaps we might talk to a tree occasionally and gratefully acknowledge its presence.

Don R. Stevenson
Hagerstown

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Seniors should give site at Keedysville a look



To the editor:

Are you bored? Lonesome? Are you looking for some fun, a good way to start your day? Something that doesn’t cost? Well I’ve found it: The southeastern senior site at Keedysville Community Center. It’s open Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.

They have great guest speakers; just this week we learned ways to protect ourselves from crime, how our roads are maintained, ways to exercise and how to care for our plants. Every speaker was informative, friendly and funny. They play bingo, horseshoes, cards and there is even a quiet room for reading. You can just sit and talk; these are some of the nicest people you will ever meet. Following all the fun are some delicious lunches. And all this is free! It is all sponsored by the Washington County Commission on Aging Inc. (A great big thank you to them).

There is no reason for you to sit home alone. You can come and go as you want, you don’t have to do everything or stay the whole time if you don’t want. It just gives you a jump-start on your day.

This is all held in the old Keedysville School in a beautiful location. Activities are held in a large, brightly lit room. It has air conditioning if needed; some days the breeze just flows in one door and out the other. The school also houses a day-care center in another area — there is no sweeter sound than a child laughing.

Everyone is extremely friendly, it is just like one big family. Martha Drennen (301-432-5624) has been the leader here for 15 years, and what a fantastic job she does. This place makes you glad to be a “senior” (and believe me, that takes a lot for me). People here are between ages 50 and 90.

Just give it a try once, you’ll be glad you did. We came for one day and ended coming for all three days this week. Hope to see you there soon.

Darlene Hoffman
Sharpsburg


Writer tries to make the most of every day



To the editor:

Very few, if any, will claim they have seen God. However, if you open your eyes, you see God every day in the acts of kindness and generosity shown to others. We are blessed with emotions and feelings that no other species has. If as an individual you have been able to develop a sense of empathy toward your fellow man, you are fortunate.

For me, a belief in God brings peace to my whole life. I am not wealthy financially. I am not powerful. However, like many others, I have developed a faith. Do I have storms in my life? Yes. I look for the good in every individual.

I am a 60-year-old male who tries to make the best of every day. Some days I am more successful than others. But I try to keep my eyes open and respond to love and peace when it occurs.

Meredith Fouche
Sharpsburg

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