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The Copy Book by Gary D. Crawford

When a dear neighbor passed away at age 92, a small trunk was found in her attic. It belonged to a previous owner of their home, so her son, knowing of my interest in such things, kindly passed it on to me. This little time capsule contained fifteen old photos, a tattered copy of a National Geographic Magazine, an even more decrepit report of a Methodist conference, and a small notebook. I have always been fascinated by time—how it flows by us, or how we flow through it. Yet despite its being all around us, time is utterly beyond our reach. It flows relentlessly, in only one direction, but at amazingly variable speeds. Sometimes it is possible to return to an event or place, to revisit it or even change something, but the opportunity is fleeting. Very quickly it passes by, and then is quite gone. For example, some time ago a neighbor took down an old shed that “always” had been there. His act changed the village slightly. We now can see the fig tree behind and a small compost pile, even glimpse the Cove beyond. This change could be reversed, of

course; we could find an old shed much like the original and replace it. The old village then would be back the way it was. We won’t do this, of course, because there is no reason to. But we know we could. The old village isn’t really gone. But then one day, we look around and find that dozens of changes have occurred. Switching things back now would be a huge and immensely

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Tidewater Times May 2011  

May 2011 Tidewater Times

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