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The Lane
By Christine (Minerd) Smith

Granddaughter of Ernest E. Minerd. Read her other memoirs.

Front Street was a dirt road.

Once a summer the county sent a tar truck

To spew its sticky mess, holding down the dust.

One felt sympathy for the unlucky vegetation at the edges,

The green or yellow self sticking out from the sides of the new road surface.


The truck never drove down the Lane.

The Lane was a refuge on a hot summer day.  A joy to ride a bicycle

Into its jungle interior of bright dark light, feeling the wind of one's own creation.

Only one car needed its access.  Otherwise, it was a playground for the neighborhood kids.


Once, I was caught at the other end of the Lane without my bike.

It was starting to rain.  A fellow fourth-grader, we called him "Lucky,"

Was riding his bike.  He saw my predicament and said,

"I'll give you a ride on my handlebars if you promise not to tell anyone."


It's been forty-five years, and I've never told anyone until now.

Copyright 2008 Christine (Minerd) Smith. Published with permission.