Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Thursday, April 2, 2009

"The Prisoner Of Casella"

Passed on to me in an email this morning.

"To the Editor:

I am hoping that this letter will keep the village of Southbridge from making a terrible mistake. I live one half mile from the Ontario County Landfill in Stanley, NY, which is leased by Casella Waste. Our dump receives 3,000 tons of municipal waste per day. It has turned my life into a living nightmare. Where once I could enjoy the outdoors sitting in my gazebo or working in my 10 flower gardens on three acres of beautiful land in the Finger Lakes, I am now virtually a prisoner in my own home because of the horrific odor emanating from the dump. I have even written a sonnet about it. I hope you enjoy it.

Sonnet to Casella

How do I hate thee? Let me count the ways.
I hate thee to the depth and breadth and height
Your dump can reach, when never out of sight,
For the vultures, crows and seagulls roosting,
For the smell of a million rotting cabbages, and
The sound of screeching machinery after midnight.
I hate thee for the indescribable odor of chemicals
And rotten eggs that bathe my senses day and
Night. I hate thee freely, as I strive to breathe.
I hate thee purely, as I swat the flies.
I hate thee with the passion that consumes my life
And with the breath, miles and tears of all my
Strife--and if God choose I shall but hate you
Better after death.

Katherine Bennett Roll"

1 comment:

  1. Two strong feelings come over me when I read Ms. Roll’s letter and sonnet.

    One of deep sadness knowing how the author is faced with such wretchedness day in and day out, night in and night out.

    The other feeling that comes over me, is one of great appreciation towards those who have rallied to work hard to educate us all on why the Southbridge Dump expansion will have a detrimental impact on Southbridge, Sturbridge, and Charlton. I hope they keep up the good fight to prevent hundreds, if not thousands, of people in this tri-community from sitting up at night writing sonnets in order to get some relief, or release, from the dreadful situation they are faced with.

    Ms. Roll’s letter and sonnet says it all.


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