|The Apple Tree (standard:humor, 752 words)|
|Author: anonymous||Added: Dec 07 2009||Views/Reads: 1501/0||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|A cute Story about an old married couple|
The Apple Tree Contented. If any one word is sufficient to describe a man, that will do for Calvin Buck. That's not to say he would ever let his few acres go to weeds, or fail to keep his little farmhouse in good repair. In fact those are the very things he relishes doing, thriving on the same daily routine, from well before dawn until well after sunset. He goes cheerfully about the barnyard chores, then to his fields with equal joy. The smell of the rich brown earth and the growing crops is sweet to him; the stubborn rocks that defy him an invigorating challenge he accepts almost eagerly. The sun warms him, the rain cools him and he welcomes it all with deep satisfaction. His father and his grandfather before him asked for nothing more in life, and neither does he. As much as he enjoys the hard work, he nevertheless looks forward to the end of each day: those quiet moments following Martha's hearty suppers, when he sits in the old comfortable armchair next to his prized woodstove, while she sits opposite him, knitting or reading, the serenity broken only by the ticking of the clock, or the soft murmuring of one of the animals outside. Taciturn by nature, Calvin practices an economy of speech, as a rule, relying on his wife to initiate conversation. Her companionship pleases him, adding to his sense of peacefulness he craves. One particularly bright morning Calvin ventured over to a far corner of his property to clear a section he had been leaving until such a day as this. An old apple tree in the middle of it, no longer bearing fruit, once taken down would give him a nice little patch to cultivate. He set to work with his usual enthusiasm for physical labor and soon exposed a spreading tangle of roots. He spaded and chopped steadily until something abruptly stopped him with a metallic clank. Further scraping revealed an iron box the size of a small foot locker lying at his feet, forcing a low grunt of curiosity from Calvin. It was heavy, but no more so than many a rock he moves often, so he lifted it onto the wagon. Later, back at the barn, he would chisel off the rusted hinges and examine the contents. During supper that evening Calvin was not himself. Indeed, then and later, as they took their customary places in the living room, he seemed more preoccupied than usual, with frequent glances at his wife. In due time and after several throat clearings, he spoke. As casually as he could, he remarked that he had been wondering, idly, one day recently, what it would be like to be rich. Had she ever had any thought that way? What she would do with a lot of money? As it turned out, she had. More than once apparently. Given this rare opportunity, she dwelled at some length on the subject, as Calvin sat in transfixed silence. His expression remained unchanged, unless someone noted his jaw tightening while his eyes narrowed ever so slightly. The flush of red could very well have something to do with his close proximity to the beloved woodstove..which, did he hear, she would immediately replace with a nice modern unit? And the furniture would have to go? His fingers dug into the padded arms of his comfortable old rocker, while he awaited the next blow. It was soon coming. New appliances and furniture would of course would never be right in this old house. A new house in town would free him from all that hard daily toil and she could entertain and have socials in the evenings. New clothes, naturally, would be needed. Calvin listened stoically throughout, with occasional nods at proper moments, until as a gradual silence announced that it was getting late, he remembered one chore he thought to take care of yet, but she needn't sit up. The moon was bright that night, illuminating a figure pulling a wagon across the darkened field to a place where an old apple tree stood, partly unearthed. Wrenched from the wagon, a large metal box dropped with a thud into the hole beneath the tree, disappearing quickly as the soil from which it came again covered it. For several moments Calvin stood motionless, reflecting on the years gone by that this tree had been in this very place. Everything has it's place, he decided, turning to head home. Old roots go deep. Tweet
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