Thursday, September 08, 2005


I met my new best friend, Jane, for breakfast this morning. She evacuated from NO with her two children. My LLS met her friend when registering the children for local schools. Jane is the one with the husband in Iraq. She called yesterday to see if we could meet. "I had a moment", she said, "I knew you'd understand." As one having moments about every five minutes, I do understand. We ate a hearty breakfast and talked about our children. I'm ok if they are ok. Include my LH in that, too.

Phone calls from the Coast reveal that generators, chainsaws and supplies are arriving but there aren't enough organized helpers to distribute the stuff. The LH and his new best friends, the Methodists, are taking the things around to anyone who needs things. Without regard to color, class or neighborhood. The LH is impartial. I tease him that he shares this attribute with God. I wouldn't be surprised if he jumps ship from the Presbyies to the Methodists because he likes how the UMC helps people.

This is what I'm really pondering:

What will my world look like when I return home? The lumberjacks have leveled the downed trees in the Pine Grove. I assume our property is a mess. I've lived with those pines, oaks and short-leaf pine trees for years. I plant according to the shade they provide. Now gone.

Before you betrate me for yapping about lost trees, recall that it is now dawning on me what the world will be like. I'm a tree gal. I love them. Albeit I hate to worry about them in storms, but I love them. My prayers for keeping them off my house are answered. There won't be any more trees.


According to the NYTimes this morning, "In Mississippi, History is Now a Salvage Job". Florence Williams wrote the article. The photos are by David Rae Morris, son of Willie Morris, I think. Willie Morris helped me ease into Deep South Life when I read NORTH TOWARDS HOME, YAZOO and later, MY DOG SKIP. David Rae's photographs take my breath away. Dammit Dammit Dammit!

Tullis-Toledano House, the historic Biloxi former Governor's Mansion, gone. I served on that Board for several years. My grandmother's horse hair stuffed Victorian sofa was part of the Tullis furnishings. I courted on that dreadful sofa (gorgeous piece of furniture in the quality sense but not comfortable) then donated the sofa to Tullis.

Brielmaier House, part of the Historic Biloxi restoration, moved to what became the Biloxi Visitor's Center to keep it safe. Gone.

Danzler House, used as a city building and as the Mayor's office during the restoration of the Biloxi City Hall. I went to many meetings there. Gone

Beauvoir, former home of Jefferson David. Scene of many great weddings. Where my garden club worked endlessly to restore the antique rose garden there. Gone

I understand that the Coast isn't recognizable.

St. Casserole


cheesehead said...

Oh, Cass.

I weep for your trees, for your wonderful buildings, for your familiar landscape, for all the things that have meant home to you.

I weep for those who face a future without them.

You are in my prayers...

peripateticpolarbear said...


Phantom Scribbler said...

Another stone, for the landscape in tatters.


Emily said...

How appropriate last Sunday's passage from Romans is: "weep with those who weep."

How much we count on our familiar landscapes!

Mary Beth said...

Oh, honey. There are no words. Horrors are going up and down my arms right now.

We bought our current home for the magnificent oaks that surround it - they reminded me of my Deep South childhood.

These things will keep coming, I know. Thank you for sharing them with us.

Aola said...

I can so relate to how you feel about your trees... I also pray for mine in the wind and ice storms, to keep blight and plagues away from them, for abundant pecan crops..and oh, all those lovely old homes... what a horrible shame. I never got to see them. so sorry that I never will.

Quotidian Grace said...

Beauvoir is gone? Oh, no, I didn't realize the devastation went that far inland. A few months ago we visited it and thought it was a fascinating historic site. I appreciate how people cherish and care for these links to their past. Loosing these landmarks is very distressing.

David said...

I went back to the former site of my church today with insurance dudes.
Many of our beautiful oak trees remain. THey have broken limbs and no leaves, but they stand. The adjuster, amidst the pile of debris and no recognizable ANYTHING said "wow, what a beautiful spot this is". I turned to him, seeing the now silent Gulf behind him, the beach, the trees that remain, although changed. I could only nod. It's different, but there REALLY is beauty, still. A sad beauty, a heart wrenching one, yet it lingers and gives hope.
Or maybe I was just so darned tired that my brain dreamed it all. Sometimes I wish it were so.

the reverend mommy said...

I weep with you.
Life is so very ephemeral.
I so very much want to be with you and help you bear this --