It was a brisk morning at the farm sale / flea market on Wednesday,
and I was only browsing when the seller shouted his announcement:
"Everything on the long table is FREE!"
In the fray, I scooped these into my stash.
The pure drama of revival hymnbooks--it's gripping, isn't it?
The covers of these portable songbooks are soft with the sweat of hundreds of hands,
maybe even thousands. They're artifacts,
I would like to say Silent Witnesses, but I know I'm getting carried away,
from the revivals and camp meetings that swept the Midwest in the early twentieth century.
After all, Cane Ridge is not so far away.
Possible Back Story:
Lillian swayed in her spot, the heat and noise in the tent making her woozy. Perspiration welled from the top of her head and seeped past the muslin band on her her straw hat. Thank goodness she had worn her old one. If she had chosen her new one, fresh fabric dye would have mixed with the sweat, run down her face, and made a fool of her. She felt like a fool anyway. What in the wide world was she doing here, in the middle of a bare cornfield, under an ugly re-made carnival tent, when most decent folks were already in bed? She clutched the songbook more tightly as the preacher launched what had to be the tenth verse of "Just As I Am."