nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

Posts Tagged ‘lane

walk along a shady lane (day 6)

with 2 comments

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‘Biking’ in northern New Brunswick, I am constantly on the look-out for scenes and themes quintessentially ‘New Brunswick’.  And the long lanes leading to homes set back from the road leap out at me …

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8-6

map showing distance travelled (map from Google Earth)

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8-6   January 16, 2014   30 minutes  3.0 km (Dalhousie Junction to Point La Nim)

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When I was a kid, I spent hours wandering up and down the long lane at my mother’s ‘old home place’.  There were blueberries to pick, a lovely shade, a breeze coaxed from the hot day by the two rows of trees, and a dear silver poplar to turn its leaves in greeting as I approached the elbow of the lane …

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It’s not the same, of course, without trees, but most lanes show the center grassy strip, flanked on either side by tracks worn by years of cars coming and going …

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lane 2

treeless lane along the Restigouche River shore (image from Street View)

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And sometimes planted trees take the place of the narrow wooded walls of the lane in my memory …

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lane 1

a carefully planted lane (image from Street View)

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But occasionally, I see a treed lane and I feel like a kid again, eager to go wandering …

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January 21, 2014  'lane'  Jane Tims

January 21, 2014 ‘lane’ Jane Tims

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Copyright 2014  Jane Tims

in the shelter of the lane

with 6 comments

Now, when the trees are shedding their foliage in yellow, red and orange, have you taken the time to stroll down a lane crackling with dry leaves? 

 

1 lane  n.  1: a narrow passageway between fences or hedges;

2: a relatively narrow way or track …

2 lane  Scot var of LONE

 

Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary, 1979

Words are so laden with connotative and denotative associations, those similar in meaning may not convey the same idea at all.  For example, the word ‘lane’ is vastly different in meaning from ‘road’, yet a lane is a type of roadway.

A lane, to me, is a narrow corridor, built to admit people from the ordinary world of community to the private world of home.  A lane is bounded on each side by trees, hedges or fences.  A proper lane must have ruts for the tires and a centerline of grass to challenge the clearance of any vehicle.  Once you are in the lane, it is difficult to see anything outside.

 

When I was young, visiting my mother’s family took us to ‘the old home place’.  It was sandwiched between the main road and the river, but because it was connected to the outside world by a long, bent, shady lane, it was truly a ‘world-apart’.

I spent many happy hours in the lane, wandering up and down its length, singing and dreaming, exploring and examining.  I loved the small woodland habitat created on either side.  I picked the wild blueberries growing there, watched squirrels busy at the workings of their pine-cone industry, and made friends with specific trees. 

One young Silver-leaved Poplar (Populus alba L.) was a particular favourite.  It stood just before the bend in the lane, its bark marked with black diamonds.  When the wind blew, it turned its leaves over in a generous offering of silver.

I have other pleasant associations with the lane.  I remember my Dad working there with a shovel and a pickaxe, trying to fill in the worst of the ruts to save the undercarriages of his car and trailer.  I remember listening to my Mom’s stories of how she and my aunt pushed their doll carriages up the lane to visit imaginary neighbours.  I remembered how excited we always were to see the gate at the end of the lane wide open, since that meant my aunt or uncles were at home.

 

lane

trees along the lane

sentinels

to guard its ways

            cone scale mounds

            acorn stashes

            the silver undersides of poplar leaves

            doll carriages with squeaky wheels

            blueberries in slants of light

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the lane a wooden shelter 

            its base the rutted track

            its sides the trees, muscled arms 

            branches overhead with fingers locked

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charmed paths

moss tablecloths 

fairy rings and follows

protected by

the closing of eyes

 

©  Jane Tims 2011

Written by jane tims

October 23, 2011 at 7:54 am

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