What a powerful set of stories to end with in the January/February issue of Yankee. Once I read Ann Hood’s “Memory House,” I couldn’t put the issue down. From there I went to the pictures in “The Winter Sea” and “Conversations: Rebecca Carroll” and ended with Ben Hewitt’s “The Lottery.” I felt transformed by truly understanding the perspective of the people writing those stories. What great story-telling. You certainly achieved the mission of listening as stated in Mel Allen’s “Inside Yankee.”
As a Coloradoan who loves reading about and visiting New England, I’ve come to appreciate a completely different part of the country. My next trip is scheduled for October 2021. I can hardly wait.
Polly Archuleta Centennial, Colorado
On the Same Page
I just finished reading “Memory House” by Ann Hood [January/February]. It took me a while, as I had to keep wiping the tears away to clear my vision. The author wrote so beautifully, with words that brought back happy memories and images of my own multigenerational Italian family home. I identified completely and appreciate how our common experience and feelings could be captured so beautifully and sincerely in print.
It is true: We may leave where we grew up, but we never really leave it behind. It is always within us.
Diane Grieco Hull, Massachusetts
Digging a Bit Deeper
Julia Shipley’s article about the stonecutters of Barre, Vermont, [“Written in Stone,” January/February] is a very fine piece—but there was something missing. Although the company that quarried and processed the granite for Union Station in Washington, D.C., was indeed headquartered in Barre, the granite—the whitest granite in the world—came from a quarry in Bethel, Vermont.
And further, the article mentions a large sculpture of a granite worker that stands on North Main Street in Barre. It was sculpted by Phil Paini, a Bethel master carver.
Like Barre, Bethel had a great influx of Italian stone workers in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Our quarry is still providing granite all around the world. La Grande Arche de la Défense in Paris is being repaired with Bethel White. A new airport in Abu Dhabi is being built of Bethel White.
And I understand that the Mormon Church has said that if any more Mormon churches are built, they will be of Bethel White.
Janet Hayward Burnham Bethel, Vermont
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Banana peels on which we’ve slipped?
Or being told our fly’s unzipped?
Or rubber spiders on our head?
We may spend April Fool’s in bed.