By A. C. Greene
It is a harsh, distant kingdom, the place the elements is often very shut and the horizon distant. The Brazos kingdom of long-ago Fourth of July fishing expeditions; the grass-grown continues to be of a fashion station of the Butterfield level Line; the streets of Abilene; the sparse grazing lands less than endless skies—all are made resonant by way of a local son’s affection and figuring out. it's a means of life—resilient and persnickety—that is sort of gone.
Above all, it truly is humans: the author’s grandmother, who had a mortal worry of bridges and whose premonitions of unnamed calamities (that as usually as now not happened), either alarmed and happy the younger boy; Uncle Aubrey, “who married late”; the blacksmith they woke up at the hours of darkness; the accepted associates; the infrequent and deliciously mysterious strangers.
With humor and powerful, unsentimental feeling, A. C. Greene conserves for us the beneficial eccentricities of position and individual that are being flattened out—almost actually bulldozed away—by the impatient, insatiable onrush of the 20th century. His West Texas is a really own nation, yet what he seeks to percentage might be favourite to all who enjoy the thoughts that tie them to their very own specific quarter of America.
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Extra resources for A Personal Country
But my purpose in defining West Texas isn't to quarrel over boundaries. It is to confine a few common points of view and ideas. The West Texas that produced me and still fascinates my social instincts is up to me to define. Beyond these geographical lines, there is the matter of elevation which contributes to an identity. West Texas has an atmospheric similarity that comes mainly from the fact that it lies between one thousand and three thousand feet high. Much lower or much higher than these altitudes creates a different atmosphere.
One identification of West Texas is simply that it is dry. Dryness creates a way of life more demanding than the facts of heat or height or abnormal wetness. The too-dry region is hardest to accommodate by man because he is the thirstiest animal. Even when he is trying to adjust to dry living he consumes more water than he has any right to expect nature to supply. This is one of the ways in which rainfall influenced the history of West Texas. Up to the 1870's even the occasional scientific expert who wandered around it thought most of the area was uninhabitable.
Across the horizon from one end of the arc to the other were the tall lines of electric lights on the drilling rigs, boring away into his land. There must have been two or three dozen visible from the front porch, and every one of them represented maybe a hundred thousand dollars of potential income to Pie. But while we were talking the old rancher excused himself and went into the house for a moment. He came back out with a rifle and a box of shells. " he asked me, and without waiting for me to accept or decline, he leveled down on one string of rig lights and began shooting.
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