Art by Maggie Jones

Art by Maggie Jones

My daughter Maggie came home with this piece of art recently from her BHS art class. It struck me as being a symbol for how a lot of us may be feeling. Or at least how I have been feeling.

When I look at it I see something strong and resilient. I see something with wide spread branches like open arms. But I also see something tied in knots, imperfect, wiry, a little jagged, worn and confused.

My heart has been longing for peace. The pandemic. The political unrest. The divisiveness. It has weighed heavy on me. Throw in family and health and work and stress and I think many of us are longing for a simpler time.

So this issue reflects that sentiment. Our profile- Nashville’s Big Back Yard moves the focus back to small towns along the Natchez Trace, including our own Leiper's Fork. These communities are struggling yet, they offer us an opportunity to explore drivable destinations that can bring us back to a time less complicated.

This issue is also about community and wellness. Getting outdoors and enjoying our local parks. Enjoying live music again, in a safe, responsible way. And taking care of ourselves during a time that is unlike any other we have seen in our lifetime.

So when I look at this piece of art. I see frustration, and entanglement and misdirection. But I see beauty and peace, hope and fortitude. I see deep roots and community and the ties that bind us together.

So. In that spirit, I look toward new beginnings and digging deep. Taking care of ourselves and one another.

It has been a hard enough year. I am ready to get back to enjoying the simple blessings in life.

Cassie Jones

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