Endless Fields
As a lifelong Harford county resident...

A few years ago, I was riding down Perryman Road, to work on some new homes at the "Gablers Shore" development. I always get nostalgic when I come to this jobsite.

As a kid, our family spent a lot of time visiting in the Perryman area. My dad's family grew up here and two of his brothers stayed there for their entire life. On the way up Perryman Road, as we passed by the canning house, I would focus on where the road used to cross over the train tracks leading to the southern portion of the farm that sat between the tracks and the Aberdeen Proving Ground. All I could now physically see was huge bright white commercial warehouses. In my memories, I could still make out the grade crossing and the plain two story white house and yard just beyond to the right. I was told once that this is where my grandparents lived in the early years.

Beyond the grade crossing, on the left was a dirt go-cart track where we spent many Saturdays in the dust and roar. They had made a large square in the corner of one of the vast corn fields, sometimes I would wipe out on the back turn and come to rest about ten feet into the tall corn with tassels flying.

I don't remember what the name of that road was, but it kinda bent to the right and continued toward the bay, fields on both sides as far as I could see. You would come to a giant barn on the left and across on the right was a brown wood-shake sided house where Clark and Minerva Thompson lived. They both worked on the farm and were good friends of my parents. I remember one year there was a field of peanuts growing behind their house. Mostly it was corn everywhere you looked. If you didn't cross the tracks by the canning house, but went the opposite direction up a dirt lane on the right side of Perryman rd, you would see a small group of houses with one large rather ornate (but a little tired) farm house with a wrap-around porch and stylish dormers protruding from the high steep slate covered roof. In my childhood, this is where my uncle Wade Cline lived with his wife Margret. Wade was the oldest living of the ten Cline children and Margret took on the mother role for the younger kids after my grandmother passed away. Uncle Wade was the farm manager in those days, I assume the large house was once the home of the Mitchell family. Later, in the 80's, it was finally torn down.

My memories are from the late 50's to early 60's, but the stories I heard from my dad and his brothers and sisters go back to the late 20's. Like when my dad fell down an abandoned well in a freak accident when he was six years old. And how my grandfather brought the family up from Virginia on the train to begin a new life here in Maryland.

It was that story that prompted me to begin writing "Endless Fields" three years ago. Just thinking about what a big move that would have been and such an impact it would make on so many over the years to come amazed me. I never met my grandfather Cline, but I tried to step into his shoes for just a little while to put these thoughts down. The verses tell his story. and the chorus is all the family, past present and future, encouraging him along the way.