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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

When is a Rock Not a Rock? When It's a Wall.

         
 Around 20 some years ago, my son asked me, "What is the most permanent legacy one can leave? " Perhaps half joking and without thinking, I answered, "A rock wall." To my surprise, son and his wife spent half the summer searching out and gathering local rock and the last part of the summer, building the wall.  The header picture shows the length of the wall.


The wall is a work of art, hand crafted with love and respect of the nature that produced the rocks.  I cannot imagine a more hallowed legacy to prove that someone had lived upon this earth.

The ranch is sold. People ask if I feel sad. Sad for some buildings that will eventually wither and rot? No, not my style. But then my voice cracks and my eyes fill with tears, "It's the wall I don't want to leave." I close my eyes and I can hear my husband's voice whenever I cried, he'd say, "Stop all that caterwauling.  That wall will be here long after all signs of humans are gone."

 It will make a lot of people happy, it's the greatest legacy you can leave, Zahnie and Katie.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Have you ever thought what you would leave as a legacy?

65 comments:

  1. I love the idea of leaving a wall behind! I think I'd bury something like a necklace or a pen within the cement too - something that personalises it and says, "I was here"! :-)

    Take care
    x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Old Kitty,
      I think maybe they did. I remember they were talking about leaving a time capsule at the time but we didn't have a formal ceremony. I'll have to ask them. You could also leave a manuscript with the pen.

      Delete
  2. That is a great idea. I just think about getting through the next day.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John,
      Well, you've been doing a great job.

      Delete
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    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for stopping by from..... where are you from, Norway?

      Delete
  4. Left their mark, must have taken a lot of work

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Holy Ghost
      It was such hard work for them. It too all one summer and on into autumn.

      Delete
  5. What a beautiful rock wall- and I can imagine it took a long time to build.

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    Replies
    1. Terri
      Even the planning took a long time. They started from scratch and didn't know a thing about wall building. They even put in a frost barrier.

      Delete
  6. I always imagine how much work must have went in building something like that. I think it's so neat how they can remain behind for generation after generation. There's something very romantic about that thought.

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    Replies
    1. Optimistic
      You're right. It is a romantic legacy. Think of all the people who will sit on that wall and all the things that will be discussed there. WOW.... That would make a good book.

      Delete
  7. It's a beautiful, beautiful wall! I love rocks as much as I love trees and rivers.
    My legacy lives in the trees I planted in many of the homes I've lived in. Well, I hope they live on. Most of them are in other states, so I will never know.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. River
      I love trees too and I'm still planting trees. Now I moved back into town in a house that I've owned for a very long time and the trees have been neglected. So far I've planted 11 trees. I hope they all make it. I know you must love rivers too.

      Your trees are making so many people happy and giving them shade ..... even if you are far away and can't see them.

      Delete
  8. Amazing and beautiful. I think planting a tree or a bush here and there will be my legacy, but at my age I'll have to hire it done...hahaha!!!

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    Replies
    1. turquoisemoon
      Planting a tree is such a meaningful legacy. I've planted many trees, too, in my life time and I'm still planting. I felt sad when I had to cut that tree down a couple posts ago.
      Yes, about help planting.... My handyman, Geno, helps me plant too.

      Delete
  9. It's gorgeous, an awesome sentiment, and a most excellent post. You made me caterwaul and it's not even my wall. :) Looks like they did a great job with it, and I'm sure it added to the charm of the property too.

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    Replies
    1. Rosey
      Oh thank you for joining in with me on my caterwauling. It's always nice to share and have company. :)

      Delete
  10. A great way
    To make ones mark any day
    And it will always be there
    Unless aliens blow up our earthly lair
    So can take comfort in that
    And congrats on a lot less hassle at your mat
    As now it is sold
    And you can roll in all your gold lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pat
      My life of moving has always been hell
      It's about like "Timmy, always falling in the well."
      It's the trees and rocks I leave behind
      I feel like Johnny Appleseed, I'm of that kind
      But I have a new project that keeps me go'n
      It's uncovering an old rock garden, a lot of hoe'n (no, not that kind) Ha

      Delete
    2. lol good thing you didn't stutter
      I could have went to the gutter
      And oh I see
      Burying your treasure so none can take it from thee haha

      Delete
  11. That is a beautiful rock wall and I understand the emotions of leaving it behind and also of thinking about it standing for years to come. I found my great-grandfather's place deep in the forest when I visited Sweden in 2001. The only thing that remained standing strong was the dry stone wall that he built. I took a rock from the wall and I have it here now. A legacy, from someone I never met, but feel connected to.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Inger
      Ahhh that is a sweet story and I love it. I love rocks as you must do too. I gather rocks and move them to various spots in my yard. I get much energy from rocks. Good story.

      Delete
  12. I understand your sentiment. But, hubby is right: the wall will remain long after we all are gone.

    My legacy? I will have to think on that one. No walls, for sure.

    Love this post. I will cite this when one of my posts goes up.

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    Replies
    1. Susan
      Walls are not for everyone, although they are wonderful to sit on and have a stimulating conversation with a friend. You'll find yours.

      Delete
  13. I think many of us spend the whole of our lives looking for a way to say, "I was here. I mattered. My life counted for something in the end." Your son and his wife, and even you contributed in your own way with the idea, all had a hand in this project. The wall speaks for all of you. I can understand why you wouldn't want to leave it. However, the statement stands, whether you are there to hear it or not. That was the point of the building, no? Your husband was right. Rather, you channeling husband is right.

    Eventually, a day will come when no one will know who built the wall or when. The wall will simply do its own talking. I think it will say that some people crafted me who loved a lot and cared enough to give it their very best effort. And, hey, come sit a spell.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Robin
      You put this so beautifully. I especially love the last thought that someday the wall will do it's own talking. Thank you for the gracious sentiment.

      Delete
  14. That is just an amazing wall. Wow, the work that went into that. When you see walls that are centuries old and if you get to the old countries, thousands of years old, you gave sage advice.
    I have planted trees a bit like Johnny Appleseed as I have traveled about and I am sure someone somewhere is saying , "what idiot put a tree there"? Hopefully some will not fall to the chainsaw.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Patti
      We both appreciate trees, as I get that message from our long blogging friendship. I'm still planting trees..... for others, no doubt. It really hurts when one dies and it has to be cut down. This house and land sat vacant for around 7/8 years and some of the years were very dry. Now I'm losing some of them.

      Delete
  15. Should I ever make it up to Montana again, I'm going to go look for your wall. That was a very loving thing your son and daugh-in-law did. I had no idea you were selling your ranch, but a few days ago I wondered if you were. Hope all's well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Su-sieee
      I shouldn't say "sold" yet, because you never know with real estate until the deed is transferred.

      Delete
  16. Dear Manzanita, I didn't realize that your were selling the farm. I've been away from reading and commenting on blogs for nearly three weeks and so I'm behind in knowing what is happening in the lives of those people--like you--whom I've come to think of as friends.

    The wall--so beautiful in and of itself--will stand there for decades into centuries and is I believe a fitting legacy that says, "We were here and we found life good."

    As to the legacy I hope to leave, I think it will be "A Cat's Life: Dulcy's Story," which I hope will continue to be read for many years. Peace.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dee
      I hope you are feeling better. Good to see you out and about.
      I think books are also a great legacy. Your Dulcy story will be read for a very long time. It's a beautiful legacy.

      Delete
    2. "We were here and we found life good."
      I really like that. I may have it etched on a stone and place it in my garden.

      Delete
  17. And I love rock walls!! What a beautiful thing to leave behind and it comes with a story.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My Dear Terry,
      Rock walls really rock. Nix that phrase. When my son was planning the wall, we drove around Helena and examined many of the old walls. There are many stone walls here because the town is built in the mountains. They really do last forever.

      Delete
  18. I think children are a great legacy to leave, too :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mark
      I later suggested that or a well written book. But my son and wife chose not to have kids so a wall, it was.

      Delete
  19. My love, children, art & laughter are my legacies--but I DO love your wall!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fishducky
      You have a marvelous talent or talents, I should say. You will have a lot of legacies.

      Delete
  20. Greetings human Manzanita,

    Yes, it's me, Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar!

    I shall leave but a brief comment. Almost time for my nap. The wall, treasured memories and a legacy that will always be cherished.

    I left a legacy in the back garden.

    Pawsitive wishes,

    Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey there you modest internet superstar,
      I am sure all your legacy's left in the back yard are wisely used by nature.
      And a pawsitive day to you, Penny

      Delete
  21. I'm afraid the only legacy I'm likely to leave is a is a trail of mayhem and disaster. But it's a lovely wall :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kellie
      Mayhem and disaster. Sounds like a great sound track for a new TV show. That in itself may be a great legacy. :)
      Thanks and take care.

      Delete
  22. Hi Manzanita .. what a great thought and legacy .. long may your wall live to share this life with future generations ..

    I'm so pleased the ranch has sold - that must be a relief, though a sad parting ..

    For now I have no idea what I'll leave .. probably a lot of space ... ie nothing around .. but I hope to turn things around and leave .. positiveness .. cheers Hilary

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    Replies
    1. Hilary
      You do send positiveness to many people in many countries. You make everyone's life better with awareness of the beautiful subjects you write about. I think you've got it nailed!!!!

      Delete
  23. Manzie: This post hits me especially hard. I think about that all the time. The wall is beautiful and meaningful. You are special. I fear I don't have a wall.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. JJ
      You already have a great deal for your legacy. I can think of your students, as your teaching lives on through them and all the books you've written, your children. You have soooo much.

      Delete
    2. P.S. JJ
      Even though I love the mastery this wall stands for, I can take no credit for it. It is a beautiful and selfless legacy from my son and his wife. It is truly a part of them. Even his border collie, Patsy, lies buried on the land.

      Delete
  24. Great post, Manzanita. Beautiful artwork. My legacy is in my writing and in my daughter. Have a beautiful day.

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    Replies
    1. Julia
      You are offering an exquisite legacy, in your writing, your lovely poetry and your beautiful daughter.

      Delete
  25. The only legacy I've ever really thought of leaving is through my interaction with people, especially young ones. I might also like to leave behind something like a scholarship or charity.

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  26. Jasmine
    A scholarship is brilliant. What a defining way to help someone unfortunate to benefit from education. But even without it, you would be long remembered by the young ones. (Not that we're going anywhere, soon). Haha

    ReplyDelete
  27. hi, dear
    Glad you found my blog and led me to yours. I am tickled that we two ancients still have our marbles and can blog away intelligibly. I must admit that I am jealous as hell of you with a gazillion followers and 54 commenters.
    I will never catch up, but I am content.

    My legacy is two scholarships I have created......one honoring my husband (Pete Daily, great jazz musician), and one honoring my Mama....hmmm.....perhaps I should put my name on them too since I have no offspring to remember me.
    I intend to read a bunch of your back issues to get to know you better....please consider doing the same for me and visit often.
    Love, Lo

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    Replies
    1. Greetings Lo
      Nice to have you visit. What a marvelous legacy to have young people receiving scholarships in the name of those you love and your name on it is also a good idea. I'm sorry to say I'm not familiar with your late husband's music but I'll check with my lifetime friend, Marilyn, whose husband is a jazz musician.
      Carry on the good work and spread the word that the older folksies can be as sharp as the young ones. LOL

      Delete
  28. Nice photo and Very interesting posts. Thank for so much. I love it very much and will recommend it to all of my friend. I would also like to invite you to visit my blog at http://1newbornbabyclothing.blogspot.com/ and share all the baby thing with you.

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    ReplyDelete
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    1. Kwok Wai Wu,
      Thank you for visiting my blog. My pleasure to meet you. I will pop by your blog too.

      Delete
  29. Hey, it worked for the Chinese....

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    Replies
    1. Al
      I like that little reminder. Thanks. So we have another Great Wall.

      Delete
  30. Very cool wall, and very very nice story. WOW...not sure what I would have answered had the question been asked of me.

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    1. Sandy
      Thank you and nice to see you again. I was thinking of the old houses that had either burned or just rotted away but the stone foundation and a stone fireplace still stood there.

      Delete
  31. Wow, your son and his wife are amazing people. That they would ask you that question in the first place is wonderful in its own right, but that they would work so hard to turn your legacy wish into such a beautiful reality brings tears to my eyes. Talk about a true labor of love.

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  32. Susan
    It's their legacy and I do have love for that wall. I love rocks, as I know you and Smarticus do too because of your anniversary rock hunting trip.

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  33. Oh my, I can see why you'd hate to leave that rock wall behind. It's so beautiful and has so much love in it. However, it is a legacy to make many others happy.

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