Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hawthorne, Florida

We are now parked close to the Georgia border. Before I write about Hawthorne I first want to mention an animal cross-over which we saw on I-75 today. It was a bit strange to see a  forest of small palms and tall grasses on a bridge over the highway. However, we did see something similar to that in Canada. I am glad that the concept is catching on here in the states, otherwise our land development will leave very little space for animals to roam. Later in the day we took a brief jaunt off I-75 and drove toward the town of Hawthorne. Near that town is the small hamlet of Cross Keys. Marjorie Rawlings, Pulitzer Prize winning author, bought land in this area in 1928. The land lies between two lakes, and a forest hammock, also located there, borders her grove of citrus trees. Rawlings' plan was that the grove would support her while she wrote books, most famous of which was The Yearling. The picture below is of the front of the house. It was on that porch that she wrote The Yearling. Her table and typewriter are still on the porch. The house is a typical Florida Cracker home, with its wooden frame, metal roof,  central hallway and long porch.
Marjorie Rawlings enjoyed cooking and entertaining. Some of the famous guests who stayed with her were such people as Margaret Mitchell, Robert Frost and Gregory Peck, to name a few. Her writings featured rural themes and settings, primarily the life of the poor back country farmer. On her property is a tenant farmer house. While standing in front of that cabin I had a feeling of stepping right into the setting in which The Yearling had been written. The yard is sandy and has a small amount of scrub brush growing around it.
In the carport next to the author's home still sits her 1940 Oldsmobile, looking quite rusty and time-worn.
Marjorie Rawlings said the following regarding her home: " Cross Creek belongs to the wind, and the rain, the sun and seasons, to the secrecy of seed and beyond all, to time".

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