By Emily Ripley
It lies at the end of a curvy dirt trail
lonely as the last leaf on a tree.
No cell phone signal to be found,
only each other and the wilderness.
Hickory-colored logs and
a moss tin roof encloses the living quarters.
The porch planks are worn and warped,
telling us that it has been enjoyed by many.
Being so high up in the mountains has its benefits.
Waking up in the morning was different …
We look down on the cotton candy-like clouds and
Marvel at the beauty of the world that lies below.
The cabin is a memory jar,
built by someone special and grounded in love.
A grueling year of muscle fatigue, sweat,
tears, and weekly drives up the mountain.
Forever in the foundation lies the names of the men
who made the cabin possible and were dedicated to the dream.
My grandfather’s dream.
His ideal sweet escape for his family.
A year later, a magnificent 10-point whitetail deer claimed its spot on the wall.
He gleams with pride and accomplishment.
the matte black wood pellet stove has heard many unforgettable stories
and witnessed laughter, tears, the good times, and even the bad ones.
In the fall, the smell of morning dew radiates throughout the house.
Breakfast entails a trek down the mountain
in search of homemade apple butter and pancake syrup.
Sharp, percussive sounds of 4.5mm copper pellets hitting beer cans travel around the property
Shooting cans quickly turns into hunting for anything in sight.
Everyone has chosen their spot in the woods for the day.
Rustling in the leaves from the animals is the only thing able to be heard for miles.
Later everyone reconvenes before suppertime to show off their harvest:
8 squirrels, 4 pheasants, and a small deer.
Dirt bikes and ATV’s are the closest things to technology.
There is no screen time.
As the sun begins to say goodbye for the day,
The family gathers on the enclosed deck to watch.
The sky is painted tangerine and rose
over the mountain parallel to ours
until it becomes pitch black for the night.
The only thing able to be seen are the stars.
The only thing able to be heard are the owls.
Now, the beloved family cabin that we created belongs to a new family.
It’s their new beginning and their sweet escape.
They can now sit around the pellet stove and bonfire to share stories.
They can now marvel at the beautiful sunsets and fluffy cloud mornings.
The cabin still lives under the same beautiful sky
and above the majority of surrounding life.
Even though we do not own the cabin anymore,
It will always be our cabin.
With hard work and determination, your wildest dreams can come true
and the memories will join along the way.