"Sometimes I go away by myself, up the hill, far enough from Stillmeadow so that I only see the slope of the roof almost lambent with sunset. Holly may come along with me, for she does not disturb the aloneness.
From the upper abandoned orchard the yard is partly visible, dotted comfortably with cockers and cats. If there are guests or children at home, and there usually are, the sound of their voices comes dreamily from the open space where the lawn furniture is.
Somewhere, someone is forever pounding a typewriter, the sound of the typewriter never ceases at Stillmeadow.
There it all is below me, this little world within a world, and I sit down on a warm gray ledge upholstered with feathery lichens and think about it in relation to the rest of the world.
The terrible suffering that man is undergoing all over the earth is like a tidal wave to overwhelm civilization. If we think of this, what can we find in the whole round turning earth to make any life good?
The intolerance sickens the soul. Race again race, caste against caste-- by what dreadful arrogance could I believe myself better than another woman because my skin is pale?
But here in the country we may establish one small territory dedicated to love instead of hate, and possibly that is why we were born. And just possibly when all men have homes, hate will diminish all over the world.
Looking down on Stillmeadow I see the years that have gone, and the mark of them is a good and kindly mark, for the trees have grown, and the lilacs are spreading graciously. When Nature devastates the whole yard full of old and lovely apple trees, she begins new life the next season with young maples, and that year the mallows are as big as full moons.
If I were a wise woman, I should understand many things about life which I do not now understand. Maybe I would know why there is so much evil walking the highways, why men must suffer, why the governments operate like kaleidoscopes instead of like good blueprints for living, why gentle people must die too soon.
I think about all these things, up in the old orchard with Holly's muzzle soft in my hand. And about the first people who owned Stillmeadow's forty acres more or less. What dreams they had of a fair world with liberty and justice for all.
And suddenly I know. I know there is a dream that will not die, and that Stillmeadow, in a small and quiet way, is an affirmation of that dream."
- Gladys Taber