Letter To The Editor: A Fable for Our Time?


To the Editor,

In 2006 the so-called ‘wall at Crosby’s’ was installed as the central feature of the Downtown Improvement Project. It was designed to provide some physical and visual separation between pedestrians and cars in the parking lot, and as a place to gather. At first not everyone understood that – it was a bare wall, and it was marble after all -- but, as kids and then all ages began to stop to chat, sit or just enjoy a bit of shade, that’s what it accomplished. 

For the past 16 years I’ve enjoyed installing and maintaining the flower planters for the wall, bringing 12 gallons of water from home every week in summer, and hanging wreaths at Christmas. There were many rewards: meeting dozens of -- passersby -- men, women, children, residents or visitors, so many stopped to chat and enjoy, wave and send cheerful shout-outs from the Post Office or the parking lot – as well as a downtown contingent of appreciative bees and a few job offers from landscape crews. As a gardener it’s been a joy to choose the flowers; this spring it was yellow and pale blue, traditional Easter colors- but also a gesture of support to Ukraine, a proud country invaded by its neighbor after three decades of independence. Honor to poor Ukraine and its flag, whose colors represent wheat (the main product) and clear blue skies…neither happening this year. 

Sadly, mindless destruction occurs here too as I found Saturday when I went to water the flowers. Although the yellow daffodils were there, the blues -hyacinths and pansies-were gone… I didn’t realize -- until I saw piles of potting soil on the ground in the parking lot and the broken corners of the planters -- that all three boxes had been pushed off the wall into the lot, where undoubtedly some kind Crosby employees had managed to heave what was left back on the wall. 

But 16 years is probably enough and it’s time to quit. Thanks to the many who helped transport and appreciate. If anyone else wants to take over, please let me know; it’s a joyful task, I have three unbroken flower boxes and it’s spring. 

Carroll Cabot


harry warner jr.