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Date:12/22/2014 9:46:17 AM
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Sources, Part IV
I've been writing at length about literary sources. This final post on this subject is about the people around you. Julie Murphree, "The Farmwife" and I have felt free to use each others ideas and writings as source materials. Once again, I urge you to check out Julie's journal at www.thefarmwife.com. One of her recent posts I've copied and saved was about compassion:

"After you’ve done everything medically possible, there is nothing else you can do but to sit, offer comfort, and watch and pray. I have held baby calves in my lap while they breathed their last, or petted them and softly sung to them as they struggled to survive. I’ve been known to wrap up a chicken backwards in a towel so I could clean their nasty butt and administer mineral oil to help loosen the egg stuck inside them. And I’ve rocked some of them to their forever sleep – just so they knew just how much they were loved and appreciated."

Every Countryman and Woman can identify with Julie's sentiment. How many animals have we tried to save? How many have we lost? Sadly, how many have we ourselves have had to euthanize? The care and emotional investment we give to our animals (whether stock or pets) separates the Countryman and Countrywoman from hunters and gatherers.

In addition to fellow bloggers, I have mined innumerable ideas from the people I've grown up around. I've told you about Wild Bill Beaudin and my Pa. Both were among the wisest men I've ever known. In spite of individual flaws inherent in every man, they were both capable of looking at the world in an abstract, humorous, and philosophical way unique to French Canadians. The stories those men would tell! Some of them were actually true. I've recounted how as an eager teenager I would stay up late and hang on to every word as those two swapped tales over stale coffee late into the Autumn nights. What I wouldn't give for just one more night with those two!

So my advice to any person in search of source materials for writing purposes is to be open for stories from every person they encounter. As the Desiderata of Happiness says: "...even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story." --Gary
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