submitted by Paul J Herrmann, retired lawyer in Saranac Lake,owner of 104 (now 110) Main Street between 2002 and 2015

About 10 years ago, the following untitled poem was found in the third-floor ceiling crawl space at 104 (now 110) Main St., Saranac Lake. The big red house – next to the library and diagonally across from the Hotel Saranac – had been owned since the early 1950s by John and Evelyn Morgan. They had renovated the third floor attic into an apartment, and I am guessing they rented it out to Paul Smith’s students.

The poem is written in script on a four-inch wide, 24-inch long paper pasted to a thin piece of wood.

To the unknown author – if you are out there, do you wish to claim it? It is a masterpiece of alliteration, and I think Bob Seidenstein would give it a good grade.

Some of us were leaving
little towns & pretty places
(though we thought them ugly at the time).

That is not to say
that we were special,
set apart from those who stayed.
We were movers but of our own selves only.

Not unlike the cabbage
grown for city market
there came a time to be detached and tucked away.
And we went willingly.

Some of us went away
just to get away.
Some of us left because
horizons never stop.

Beyond each hill
a new one waits
and pulls us like the
hidden hand of love.

Some of us thought we’d
walk a little taller
if we walked away.

Some of us were driving off.
Some of us were driven off.

And there were those
who couldn’t do
or wouldn’t do
what those who stayed behind
were left to do.

Some of us chased shadows,
dreams, ambitions.
And as we went we waved goodbye forever.

Most of us had no
pre-determined destination.
There were jobs in Tonopah,
logging to be done outside Seattle.
And, heading east, you always
came back rich.

Most of all,
there was some living to be done.
Even I knew that, ever
since they built the road.

Mama shrugged
and let me go
with some misgiving,
and I suspect,
a little pride.

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