Another good old friend of Dad's was a fellow named Hake Paige. Hake and Dad had known each other since they'd gone to school together as children. Over the years, they'd worked together in the potato houses, gone on hunting and fishing trips and been downright good friends. They'd shared a good many butts, brews and stories in all the time they'd been acquainted.
Aug 17, 2014 - 12:12:06 AM
Heaven Bound - A Poem by Martha Stevens-David
Martha Stevens-David shares with Magic City readers today, her most recent Poem "Heaven Bound."
Aug 13, 2014 - 12:27:07 AM
Dad said that the first time he'd ever laid eyes on "tha suit" his Uncle Jimmy was wearin it, not well, but wearin it jist the same. Dad was nineteen years-old by then and it was nineteen thirty-four. The First World War was jist a bad memory in most people's minds and Grammy Stevens kept sayin "Thank You God!" because none of her family had been called up to lay their lives on tha line for that shitty war!
Jul 27, 2014 - 4:03:24 AM
His given name was "Kenneth" but, everyone who knew him, always called him "Macaroni." He was what some people might call the "town" character. Folks loved to play jokes on him and he was never one to let them down. He was blessed with a cheerful nature and would submit to whatever indignity done to him without a word of complaint. When you first laid eyes on him, you got the distinct impression that he was "simple," but if you looked closer, it was easy to see that there was a keen intelligence lurking somewhere just behind his eyes.
Jul 18, 2014 - 2:52:17 AM
Sammy and Lem had lived next door to each other all their lives. Their mothers had gone into labor on the same day and they'd been born three hours apart. The doctor had spent the day of November first, nineteen forty-four, running back and forth between the Baker and Maclean houses waiting to see which baby would arrive first. The boys had heard the story of their births so many times that when anybody brought the subject up; they'd tune them right out. They were downright sick of hearin about it.
Jun 25, 2014 - 12:10:24 AM
When I was growing up in Aroostook County during the fifty's and sixty's, as in most small towns, many of the people who lived around us were related to us in one way or another. One of those who come to mind was a woman named Emma Goodrich.
Jun 20, 2014 - 5:15:27 AM
Walt adjusted his sunglasses to block the early morning sun as it reflected off the edge of the Piscataqua Bay Bridge and directly into his eyes. He accelerated just a dite and the rental Thunderbird picked-up the demand without hesitation. He leaned back and settled himself more comfortably into the soft, leather seat and let his mind wander a little, he was goin home. He looked up and saw his reflection in the rear view mirror and then he lifted his hand and rubbed it across the day-old stubble on his face. The light brown beard was mixed here and there with a just a hint of gray and Walt didn't particularly like that thought at all.
Jun 8, 2014 - 12:17:11 AM
Saturday was Jake's favorite day of the week and it was his favorite day for many reasons. First, it meant that he didn't have to report back to his job at Pinkham Lumber till Monday. Two, it meant that he could escape from Ella's beady eyes for a few hours by taking the trash to the dump. Three, it meant that he could sit on the tailgate of his pickup and down a few cold beers without anyone giving him the fish eye.
Jun 1, 2014 - 12:15:10 AM
Dad - The Final Years
The last fifteen years of Dad's working life was spent working as a janitor at Pinkham's Lumber Company, which is located just outside of Ashland on the Portage Road. Pinkham Lumber, at that time, had the distinction of being the only fully-automated lumber mill in the United States. It utilized every piece of the tree, nothing was wasted.
May 28, 2014 - 7:53:15 AM
Dad and Me
Dad loved to fish and with eight kids, he usually took a couple of us with him every time he went because he knew that if he didn't, there'd be a lot of sulking at home when he returned.
May 25, 2014 - 12:12:26 AM
The marriage, by all accounts, seemed happy. At least that's what folks always thought. They never seemed to argue or bicker like a lot of other young, married couples did. When folks asked how long they'd been married, they'd glance lovingly at each other and a look would flash between them. Jake would reach over and give Cassie a little pat on her bottom and say, "Not long enough, is it honey?" His wife would gaze him with looove shinin in her pretty blue eyes and nod her head in agreement. Theirs was a happy marriage indeed.
May 18, 2014 - 1:07:13 AM
About five years ago, my husband Leo, decided that we needed to buy a newer vehicle and he set about finding one with a vengeance. He made a list of all the local used car dealerships in our immediate area and after work each day, he'd stop and check out what they had available. We had discussed our needs and wants very thoroughly prior to beginning the hunt so I was very surprised when he came flying home the second night with want burning a hole in his checkbook.
May 16, 2014 - 7:53:09 AM
Mr. Smith's Zoo
Mr. Smith was the head keeper of a very large zoo. He was very proud of his job and he was certain that his was the very best zoo in the whole wide world.
May 14, 2014 - 12:12:23 AM
The Kerosene Can
Mother swore as she hit her thumb on the side of the iron grate of our old kerosene cook stove that she was cleaning. She wiped her hands on her apron and examined her thumb more closely. "It hurts like hell but it's too far from tha heart to kill me!" she said to the room at large and to no one in particular and continued polishing the old stove.
May 13, 2014 - 12:17:20 AM
Dad - Working Years
The years slid by and in nineteen fifty-five, Dad was made the foreman at Maine Seed Potato Growers and he spent nearly all of his life caring for potatoes. Mother used to complain that dad had spent more time with those "damn potatoes" than he ever had with her. For those who don't know much about growing potatoes, here is a brief synopsis.
May 11, 2014 - 12:15:37 AM
Dippy Doodle Duck
Mama Duck was a very good mother and she never left her nest. Every now and then she'd lift her large, fluffy bottom a little and look at the big egg.
May 7, 2014 - 7:45:22 AM
Alkey swung his legs over the side of the bed and sat-up. He rubbed his hand over the top of his bald head and across his eyes. Then, he squinted at the numerals on the old clock that was sitting on the top of his dresser and seein the time, swore under his foul breath. He pushed himself up off the bed, shuffled over to the open bedroom door where he paused for a moment and then proceeded down the long, narrow hallway to the top of the stairs. He listened for a minute to the muted sounds from below and then he bellowed, "Anne! I'm on my way down and you'd best have my breakfast ready!" With that threat aimed in his wife's general direction, he ambled over to the bathroom door and went inside.
May 4, 2014 - 7:50:31 AM
To Those I Love: A Poem by M. Stevens-David
I wrote that poem for an 18 year-old girl who had gone into her backyard to take the clothes off her mother's clothesline and a hunter mistook her for a deer and he killed her. So sad. I wrote the poem but never gave it to her parents because I didn't know them. Martha
May 2, 2014 - 8:10:27 AM
By the time Charley David Rose finally made his way into the world, his parents already had four girls and had given up on ever having a boy. Need-less-to-say, he was more than welcome! His father had longed for a son so bad that every time his wife was "carryin" he demanded to be allowed to name the child in advance. Hence, all his daughters had boy's names. They were Jackie, Ronnie, Dana and Billy. Folks, upon hearing his daughter's names, laughed and said that that just showed what a fool he really was. Did he really think that by naming the kid in advance, it might have some effect on its gender?
Apr 27, 2014 - 12:20:32 AM
Mother said that she would never forget the day that the animal came limping up the dusty, dirt road to our house. It was the middle of a very hot August for Aroostook County, Maine and Mother had risen at her usual five to feed Dad and get him off to work. She had gotten the three oldest children out of the house to walk the two miles up the dirt road to the Old South School and her day was already long.
Apr 26, 2014 - 12:12:05 AM
It was now the end of May and winter still had not shown any inclination of relinquishing her hold on the county. Oh, sure, there had been the odd couple of days, here and there, when the ever-present wind had died a little and the inhabitants of our small Aroostook County, Maine town had dared to hope that there had been a reprieve, but it didn't happen.
Apr 24, 2014 - 7:50:09 AM
The Apple Tree
Hughy slid out of bed and shuffled over to the window that looked out into the back pasture and was surprised to see that there was just a hint of frost on the ground. Fall had arrived overnight in Aroostook County. The wind was out of the north and it bent the apple trees in his orchard as it passed through the heavily laden branches, down over the empty potato fields and across the road.
Apr 20, 2014 - 12:10:31 AM
Sonny Campbell was a game warden. His father and grandfather before him had been game wardens. It was often thought by folks around town that there wasn't any way that Sonny could have been any thing else. After all, hadn't his great, great grandfather been one of those Campbells who'd come from the area over around New Brunswick and his grandfather looked exactly like the pictures of the Indians in all the history books. There isn't a better game warden than a man with a little Injin blood now is there and everyone knew that if you came from over that way, you had to have some Micmac or Malaseet Indian blood in you.
Apr 17, 2014 - 12:03:33 AM
M. Stevens-David Review: "Different Coins in the Fountain" by Carlos Cornejo
Carlos Cornejo's idea to write his collection of short stories in two books is brilliant and these stories do take the reader all around the world because they are "set" in many different cultures. I loved his work and find my mind going back to certain phrases and characters from time to time. I will treasure these two volumes and very happily add them to my own book collection.
Apr 16, 2014 - 12:15:21 AM
M. Stevens-David Review: "The House on Dead Boy Lane" by Carter Johnson
"The House on Dead Boy Lane" is very well-written and it held my interest right though till the end. I found the cover of the book very mysterious and compelling and having been raised in a very small town, I know that all small towns have places of mystery.
Apr 13, 2014 - 12:25:30 AM
Jake laid his fishin gear down in the bottom of dad's old, green canoe and then he slid the canoe quietly into the slowly moving water of the Aroostook River. The canoe rocked slightly as he settled himself into the seat and picked up the paddle. He paddled silently along the edge of the shore as he slowly made his way downstream to where the river divided and then he cut across the current in the middle and paddled until he reached the opposite side. He lay the dripping paddle across his knees and let the canoe glide along the edge of the riverbank.
Apr 13, 2014 - 12:17:40 AM
Great Aunt Cassie
She was our great aunt but us Stevens' kids always called her Aunt Cassie. She only stood about five feet tall in her stocking feet but she had more drive and energy in her little finger than most people had in their whole body. There wasn't anything that she couldn't or wouldn't do if she put her mind to it. To me, she was the epitome of the true American pioneer spirit.
Apr 11, 2014 - 7:12:35 AM
The residents of Aroostook County, Maine generally consider themselves to be conservative by nature and it usually takes quite a while for new styles and fads to catch on. When the news finally reached Ashland that longer hairstyles were "in" for men, the news was greeted with wholehearted enthusiasm. The entire male population heaved a sigh that was equal to a condemned man's relief, when he hears that his death sentence has been rescinded.
Apr 9, 2014 - 12:23:12 AM
My brother Jake and I were born only sixteen months apart. At birth, he was given the Christian name of Arnold Louis at birth but, our great Uncle Hal soon christened him "Jake" and this nickname was to stick with him throughout his life. He was a chubby little boy with bright carrot colored hair and he had a dusting of light orange freckles scattered across his nose. His eyes were bright, blue and when he smiled in his lopsided way, huge dimples appeared in both cheeks. If you've ever seen one of Norman Rockwell's paintings of American children, then you've seen Jake.
Apr 6, 2014 - 12:15:26 AM
I'll never forget the time our cousin Leroy came for a visit. We considered him a "city" kid because he lived three miles closer to town than we did. Leroy really wasn't all that popular with us because he liked to brag so damn much.
Apr 3, 2014 - 5:22:13 AM
M. Stevens-David Review: "The Colors of Blue" by Lance McCulloch
The characters throughout the story were very well-developed and interesting and frankly, I was sorry to see the story end. Mr. McCulloch should be very proud of this, his first book and I for one, hope that he continues.
Apr 2, 2014 - 2:10:31 AM
Great Uncle Hal
Mother's uncle, Harold Sutherland, was a tall gaunt man with a fringe of flaming red hair and piercing blue eyes. He was as Scottish as a person could get and damn proud of it too. He and his wife Cassie owned and operated a small family farm on the Goding Road about a half a mile down the road from our house. Aunt Cassie and Uncle Hal as we called them were the limelight of our lives. When things got too boring at our house, we could always be found at their house listening to or being involved in some aspect of their daily life.
Mar 30, 2014 - 12:12:33 AM
Uncle Ron was the kind of man nobody really understood. He was, well, kind of different and that was putting it mildly. He stood about five feet eight inches tall and all of his life he weighed around one hundred forty-five pounds. His hair was a light; reddish brown and his eyes were the color of muddy water. It was his laugh that got your attention though. He had a way of laughing that made you question not only his sanity but your own as well. His laugh began with a high pitched giggle and ended somewhere up high, close to a scream. Hearing it made the fine hairs rise up on back of your neck like the hackles on an angry dog.
Mar 28, 2014 - 7:23:34 AM
When most people think of their grandfathers they think of them with deep love and affection but not me. My maternal grandfather was not a man whom one could like or love easily.
Mar 23, 2014 - 12:12:30 AM
Charley, The Lazy Goose
His father spoke to him each day about three things that he considered very important in life. They were anticipation, participation and awareness. His father warned Charley that if he did not start exercising right away, he would not be strong enough
Mar 21, 2014 - 8:07:29 AM
Upon the death of his father in nineteen fifty, Des McCormack, our neighbor to the north, inherited the small family farm. Some years, if the drink wasn't calling him more than the potatoes, Des would plant a few crops here and there around his hundred or so acres. There was a small apple orchard located just down over the hill from the homestead and his father had taken great pains to nurture the trees so that by the time Des was old enough to farm, the trees were mature and were producing a variety of wonderful apples.
Mar 16, 2014 - 12:10:26 AM
My daughter and her family came for a four day visit during Easter this spring and we had a lovely time. Since they live in a fairly large city in New Jersey and we only get to visit about once a year, I tried to spend a lot of time with my granddaughter, Peyton, who had just turned seven. We live in the town of Minot, in the foothills of south, central Maine and I wanted her to get to know me better and how we live here in the rural countryside.
Mar 13, 2014 - 12:20:35 AM
Diary of Death
I am no longer aware of time or anything else except what is on my television screen. I hear and see that the second tower has begun to lean ominously and ABC News is stating that the second tower is going to fall too! Suddenly, the air is filled with news flashes and a new word is beginning to emerge. Terrorists!
Mar 9, 2014 - 12:07:33 AM
When we related this story to our friends and relatives, nobody believed us at first, but when we told them that it was the absolute truth, everyone was incredulous! This couldn't have happened, especially at a very fine hospital in a very excellent doctor's office in Lewiston, Maine. But it did, it really did! And oh yes, the only thing I changed in the story was the doctor's name.
Mar 5, 2014 - 12:23:09 AM
Ashland High School Graduation - 1963
Life takes you where it wants and you simply have no control one way or the other. It doesn't mean that it's bad, that's just the way Life is.
Feb 23, 2014 - 12:17:30 AM