Bon Iver recorded their 2007 album while in a cabin for three straight months in northwestern Wisconsin. For Emma, Forever ago plays in my thoughts as I make way way across the rural roads along the mighty Lake Superior.
The occasional farmhouse is all one sees from the road, sometimes the beginnings of a dirt road that I imagine leads to hidden gems of solitude. Open fields of haystack rolls call to my inner child, and I run through the sweet grass in between the stacks.
I find a sandy trail that takes me to the shoreline. An old picnic table is set upon the shore, rotting away in contentment. I rest for awhile and take in the beauty, which is easy to do in this hidden area of Northern Wisconsin.
A abandoned schoolhouse from the mid 20th century begs for me to come closer, it’s been far too long since anyone has stepped into her walls. I check the mailbox, peer around sagging doors, feel the splintering wood.
The ghosts here fill me with a midwestern calm, and I can appreciate why people call this area home.