Old Farm Sled in Snow

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Old Farm Sled in Snow

As I hiked through snow last week on a path circling past a farmhouse built in the nineteenth century, I came across an old sled designed to be drawn by horses. The worn object had been left by one side of the trail I was following.

When I encountered the weathered sled, I felt as though, like a leaning barn and a collapsing tool shed nearby, it had endured and represented a time that can now be remembered either with nostalgic appraisal or a forlorn attitude.

The blue and red of the peeling yet vivid paint contrasted with the bright white of fresh snowfall or the subtle brown coloring evident in the limbs and trunks of bare trees behind it. The obvious deterioration from years of exposure in the elements seemed to add depth to the texture of the image, as did those tawny reeds of dormant grass appearing like stubble sheltered beneath the sled.

Though the sled seemed like it might no longer be in use, even in this season for which it had been intended, its presence amid the wintry scenery and the declining state of its condition contributed a sense of long-term experience.

With its appearance in such a state of diminished shape, the sled suggests a continuing connection to the rich history of its surroundings and perhaps represents an icon of another time or rural lifestyle once more prominently present in the area. Additionally, its positioning by the old farmhouse influences the view of the overall atmosphere at that location for anyone who, like myself, happens to pass along the trail.

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