Wild Rice Church

Planted a tree down at Wild Rice Church yesterday. It is several miles southeast of Twin Valley, a mile off the main road running to Waubun, right along the Wild Rice river. It was cold and windy. The spade crunched through a little ice on the way through the sod, but the digging was easy. Sandy soil. Good for trees.

Fifty yards away, between the church and where the land slopes down to the river stands a cluster of giant spruce. The wind through the needles made a low roar. That's a sound you can't buy. The higher the tree, the less breeze it takes to make them roar. I felt like something was watching as I dug a hole just between the church and the spruce. No cars went by. Once I thought I heard some music from the church. Had to have been in my head. Wished it wasn't.

I was expecting somebody to stop in and ask what I was doing. I had my answer ready. I am burying my dog, is that a problem?

So, I hope Wild Rice church survives. It looks alive. It is well-kempt. They still hold services. My column this week (see below) argues for the preservation of such churches even after services stop. I will have the older women on my side, I know that. As for the men, the old guy who sings at all the funerals will want to save the building, and maybe the bachelor who's on every committee and would join the altar guild if they let him. But off to the side, grumbling, sullen and restless, will be the seed-capped men with the dozers, waiting for the preservationist ninnies to look the other way for a couple of hours.