Wednesday, July 6, 2011
I want to Visit Rivulet, or Hope
I am sometimes fascinated by the names of places. When I think of a place with a name like Rivulet, I picture wide skirts and sun browned faces. I picture a place from a century or more ago. In my mind, Rivulet is a heart breaking mixture of endless labor and abundant natural beauty. I imagine a tiny cemetery with birth and death dates that are very close together. Running through this vision is a tiny creek...the anonymous rivulet from which hails Rivulet.
Like Rivulet, there is a town called Hope, where I have never been. Because of this, I can imagine it any way I want. I picture Hope as a dusty Ghost town of a place. I see the skeletons of false fronted saloons and weed strewn paths where roads once were. There would be a spring, but not much of one and a few alkali ponds. This would have been a place that was populated for a time mostly by people who sought after gold, or some other precious mineral. These people would have gotten there on borrowed money and worn out dreams. In Hope, nobody stayed long. The color ran out or supplies were too costly to import. Perhaps the banks that extended credit became impatient. The Hope of my imagination died out. The dead were anonymous and the living wandered further.
There are probably many places named Rivulet and Hope in several different states. I am sure none of them is like the ones in my mind. I would probably be disappointed if I visited them. I am sure they both have convenience stores and trailer parks. Most likely the people who live there are glad they do, so they will have places to live and buy fuel and cigarettes. The quaint buildings and ruins I picture have probably long ago given way to double paned windows and vinyl siding. The broken wagon tongues and wheels are most likely buried under asphalt or manicured lawns. Places change. Names usually stay the same. People like me endlessly imagine.