Scott Hill Farm Poetry

1. The Mountain of Youth
2.  RITE for Ann and Rich
3.  Easter Flowers for Aunt Delean
4. Granddaughter of the Hill

The Mountain Of Youth

This is only a hill with a path through the woods,
and it puts on a show every day of the year.
Thirty minutes a day is all that it takes.
You can watch or dream while you're there.
You can go any time of the day that you like,
but I like the show at dawn.
Thirty minutes you say "I could dream in my chair,"
but let me tell you the truth.
This is only a hill with a path through the woods,
but it could be your "MOUNTAIN OF YOUTH."
This path through the woods welcomes all who may come;
the young or the young at heart.
But, if you expect miracles you can't just sit there,
you must do your part.
The round trip is only a mile and a half,
but beginners may not go all the way.
You should learn all the actors; they live there you know;
The trees, the flowers, the insects, the animals, the birds.

When the mile and a half becomes a habit,
and you learn all the actors,
you will slowly begin to realize:
Your aches and pains - most have vanished,
Your troubles are smaller,
You have learned to laugh at life's "curves."

When you learn you must serve and not sit there,
learn to laugh and not cry.
You're on the way to learning God's truths.
It is then that you find this is not just a hill,

Walter C. Scott
Copyright 1987
published June 17, 1987
Meade County Messenger

RITE   For Ann and Rich

It was more than the walk
   on a cold day, up the hill
   and into the woods
this first spring
   since the old man passed away.

The high color in your cheeks
   your mama's
   a wool bandana tied
   under your chin,
eyes the shade of new denim
   your daddy's - and as bright as the sky
   at the crest of Scott Hill

alight from within
the next generation
stepping onto this land
into time
your own
here and now

loving yes
walking yes
breathing yes
planting yes
   115 white pine
along the ridge and into the woods

this day yes, for all days
The Scott Hill Farm. Today
you are Yes.

Barbara Foote, Copyright 1998

   For Ann, Martha and Jess
I'd like to think he planted them for her 
on a golden afternoon in late September 
where he knew she would see them 
the following March as she stood at the sink, 
elbow-deep in hot suds , washing out 
the the milk pail and strainer 

she would peer into the early morning 
to make out what it was in the pasture, 
and as the sun eased over Scott Hill 
she would see their yellow heads bobbing 
in the March wind 

every year their path would grow 
as they meandered, like children skipping 
toward the top of the hill, and tumbling down again. 
She would think of her babies, wherever they were- 
   plump, towheaded,  bright-eyed with cheeks aflush 
   like peaches in the orchard 
and she would know that winter would not last 
   forever, and she would smile. 


Aunt Delean, braids wound into a crown, 
you grew armloads of giant zinnias 
and a cellar full of food season after season 
   decade after decade, 
treked morning and evening 
   from house to barn and barn to house, 
   milk buckets in hand beside your husband, 
   fixed his lunch, then laid down in the blue bedroom 
      one April noon, and peacefully died - 
      your salad served two days later 
      at the wake 
you pieced quilts for all the children 
   and grandchildren-one remains 
   where your hands left it in the frame 
   suspended on the ceiling 
and you gave to newlyweds 
   a set of stainless steel mixing bowls 
   with a basket of your jams and jellies 
   wondering if it was "hokey"- 
my guess is it was you
  who planted them,
your greatest gift
always yourself.

Barbara Foote, Copyright 1998
Granddaughter of the Hill
                  For Carol

As if emerging from the pages
   of an English novel
she fairly whirled
   a strawberries-and-cream complexion
   flushed in the early morning light.
From under a wide-brimmed straw
a torrent of auburn and amber
   poured in waves
   to the center of her back.
She was dressed for the hill
   in jeans and light cotton
and as she turned she abruptly asked, "Where
   are the walking sticks?" Suddenly

I was reminded of the reverie
of young girls
trying on appearances, gauging
   a look, and I knew
I stood in the presence
of a waking dream.

"Over there," I said, gesturing
to toward the corner, where three sticks
rested beside the open door, and I smiled
to apologize for my intrusion. "Will Molly go?"
she asked of the golden dog napping
on the porch outside the door. "I am sure
she would like to be asked,"
I assured her. And she was gone
as I stood in the kitchen imagining

her grandmother as a young bride
transplanting herself, from
Eastern Kentucky to this hill farm
step by step, on foot and
   on horseback  -
her grandfather
walking his "mountain of youth"
into his eighth decade, until
after she died, and a stroke
rendered the hill to his imagination

and now
in the dawn
of an August morning
a young girl
into continuance.

Barbara Foote, Copyright 1998