Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Letters From The Barn: Walking The Property Line

Letters From The Barn: Walking The Property Line

Often boundaries are square. Or rectangle. I once even lived somewhere that was basically a triangle. Which is fine, those are easy shapes for city planners and developers and the rest to draw up. Easiest for neighbors to know who belongs on which side of which fence and where it should be built.

All of that makes sense and I'm fine and dandy with it. But, lately, I have a boundary that is rounder and more fluid. It's a body of water. A creek that runs the length of my property. So, "my" land ebbs and flows with it. One year there is quite a bit more beach on my side, the next, a strong current washes it away, along with a tree. 

The next year brings me a new beach created somewhere else by the washing of waters over so many other stones from so many other naturally created mini beaches down the creek. And, I like that. I like looking off my porch not at a rectangle to see the end of my land, but a rolling, looping snake of a property line that goes in and out of a meadow and a forest and around a hill. There is something (to use a very overused word) organic about that.

It can almost make me feel as if there is no legal property line as it blends so into the natural world around it. Obviously there is, but visually, it's a very relaxing view with no hard corners to hang up your eyes on. Some views are better without sharp angles. Framed by a tree and its leaning branches or a heron's opening wings, they guide your eye along the property line, seeing it as a vista rather than a stopping place. And, I am grateful.

Author: Meriwether O'Connor