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A Hedgehog’s Hedge

It was really no accident that Churchill moved into the Boxwood Hedge that ran next to the stream. The Boxwood was perfect, in almost every way. The wood was very dense, heavier than water in fact, which made it ideal for the woodcuts Churchill worked on during the Winter months. It also had a “foxy” smell, which kept some of the overtly curious neighbors cautious, not knowing for sure if a fox was in fact visiting. And in the summer, being a broadleaf evergreen, the dense 1 ½” leaves made the place shady and cool.

Churchill knew he had to be careful with the Boxwood, because the leaves were poisonous if eaten, but his friends knew that the “foxy” smell was also a food warning that one and all heeded. Otherwise, the humans in the big house had made all kinds of topiaries in the garden from the Boxwood, next to the covered bridge, so that enormous rabbits and frogs and turtles and many more glided through the line of sight when Churchill and Edgar sat on the platform on a summer’s evening.

The old woman from the big house had once said that her great great great great grandparents had taken Boxwood to Virginia in the colonial days, and some are still alive. Even the Greeks and Romans, she said, had admired it. All Churchill knew for sure was that the little flowers it produced in Spring gave him great joy, and the hedge produced a sense of peace and stability in him that made him very grateful.

-The End-
August 2003


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