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July 2019 Vol. 15 No. 2

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Adelaide B. Shaw

The Ghosts of Bennett College

forgotten field –
purple loosestrife
catches the wind

It stands decomposing a little more each day. With the passing seasons, wind, rain, snow, sleet, and sun have rendered their work on the walls of wood and stone. Vacant for 40 years. Once a hotel, built in 1893, a weekend respite for city folk who wanted the country air. In 1907 a women’s finishing school and college until its closing in 1978

Structured in the style of Adirondack lodges, it boasted 200 rooms, wide verandas under stone archways, restful gardens and rambling paths. It gave life to the small farming community.

Now, just a relic at the entrance to the village, sinking lower into the dirt. Unchecked nature has taken over the gardens; vandals have plundered whatever could be plundered.

The eager faces and voices of students, the laughter and talk, the weighty discussions and gay parties. Now only in old photos and some memories.

swirling fog
the shadowy movement
of a deer