May Day -Long Beach High 1907

30 Apr

 I love vintage photos. This May Pole picture from Elsie’s years at Long Beach High School is one of my favorites.  Elsie is dressed as  Alice in Wonderland, 5th from the right. Her friend Ruth, mentioned in the book, is next to Elsie in a white dress.  Elsie  is wearing a white apron and holding  a ribbon.  This will be a photo included in “Elsie’s Mountain Years.”

This lovely poem written by Elsie had a date written on it indicating she had written it during the years of the great depression.   Elsie’s family had sold the apple ranch and she was cherishing her memories of her beloved mountain. In 1947, the year Jack died and the year I was born,  Elsie began her third season of life on Palomar Mountain. She had fallen in love with Palomar in 1904 when she went up as a 16 year old girl. Then she spent a number of years as a young bride and new mother operating the apple ranch and resort on Palomar. The property was lost about the time the great  depression hit. Her third season of returning to the mountain she loved was in 1947 when my parents and Elsie went together to build a small and still-beloved cabin. It was in the years between, when she only had memories, that she wrote “Haunted.”


by Elsie Roberts

There are those who fear shapes in the darkness,

Those who tremble at dream visitations—

Ah, but I—I am haunted by beauty,

When the past and absent are present,

And, with magic of memory, mountains

Far away, long unseen, rise about me.

In the blackness of night, tossing, sleepless,

(Then when all things are hidden, and seen, too;)

Or perchance it may be at mid-morning,

As from prosaic floors dust is garnered,

They are there: sudden, vivid, a vision.

Autumn leaves on a trail that winds, climbing;

High above, swaying evergreen branches;

Shining vistas of breath-taking grandeur;

Frail wild flowers by waterfalls nodding.

I hear birdcalls and wind in the forest,

Catch the tang and fragrance of mountains.

What a boon, to be haunted by beauty!

I am thrilled to discover that many readers have enjoyed Elsie’s descriptions of life in the new state of Arizona.  I thank readers who have taken the time to write reviews. Amazon’s Elsie page  now has 203. The Goodreads  webpage has a feature called Listopia. There are  thousands of books that people have added as favorites  to these lists according to the genre. ” Elsie” has been voted on in 4 of the many lists. Here is the link to those lists

I was amazed to see “Elsie” is #1 in “The Old West in First Person” from 96 books. Voted second in the “American Frontier” list  out of  196 books. It is also listed in “Women’s Journals & Diaries in History”  and “Women’s Correspondence-Letters in History.”  I am grateful for readers who have been so supportive.

On May 1st and 2nd “Elsie” will be FREE again as a KINDLE book. I appreciate it if you would spread the word. Three months ago when it was free there were almost 20,000 downloads! I wonder how many more kindle readers are out there?

Happy May Day !

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