Sacred Trust – Magical Place


“We do not believe in ourselves until someone reveals that deep inside us something is valuable, worth listening to, worthy of our trust, sacred to our touch.  Once we believe in ourselves we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight or any experience that reveals the human spirit.”

e.e. cummings

Once in the life of the Tin Man there entered such a person, who brought such insight and confidence in exposing one’s vulnerability and inner light. 

This Most Magical Mary was the Undergraduate English Professor of the Tin Man, many decades ago.  Their lives have remained intertwined by the vines of love, respect and joy.  The vines continue to bear such beautiful fruit, even the Fall of their lives.  Once the roots of self  plunged into the sacred earth of conviction there sprouted buds to flourish a lifetime.

Marvelous, Magical Mary


Want to read more about Mary, click on this link:  This was the Tin Man’s last visit to the Emerald City of the East and little did he know that his life would almost end upon his return home. 

It was time, to once again, pay a visit to Marvelous Mary in Media, Pennsylvania.  During this visit we wandered the paths of Ridley Creek State Park (just outside her front door – yeah, I am just a bit green with envy!) 

Ridley Creek State Park’ is a 2,606 acre Pennsylvania state park in Edgmont Township, Delaware County, Pennsylvania, Middletown Township, Delaware County, Pennsylvania and Upper Providence Township, Delaware County, Pennsylvania. The park, about 5 miles north of the county seat of Media, Pennsylvania, offers many recreational activities, such as hiking, biking, fishing, and picnicking.

Ridley Creek passes through the park. Highlights include a 5 mile paved multi-use trail, a formal garden designed by the Olmsted Brothers, and Colonial Pennsylvania Plantation, which recreates daily life on a pre-Revolutionary farm.

The park is adjacent to the John J. Tyler Arboretum.   Ridley Creek State Park is just over 16 miles from downtown Philadelphia, between Pennsylvania Route 352 and Pennsylvania Route 252 on Gradyville Road.

The bulk of the property was acquired in the late 1960s from the estate of well-known horse breeder Walter M. Jeffords, Sr. and his wife Sarah, a niece of Samuel D. Riddle.   The Jeffords had acquired the land starting about 1912 in small parcels, until they had over 2,000 acres, which was the largest private undeveloped property in the Philadelphia area by the 1960s.    By 1918 they had built a large mansion, now the park office, around a stone colonial farmhouse.  

Twenty-four other historic properties were located on the grounds, many farmsteads that had retained family ownership since the seventeenth century. 

In 1976 these properties were registered on the National Register of Historic Places.

The area was originally settled by English Quakers and remained agrarian into the twentieth century.   The oldest property is the 1683 Worrel House.  In 1718 a water mill,  then known as Providence Mill,  began to grind corn. In the late 18th century a plaster mill was established next to the grist mill.   

A rolling and slitting mill replaced the plaster mill by 1812,  and became known as Bishop’s Mills.   

Workers cottages, a dam, and several outbuildings complete the mill complex, now known as Sycamore Mills.    The mills operated until 1901, when they were damaged by fire.

When one walks through the park, nature reaches out and gathers one’s soul into her embrace; thereby removing all the pins and needles of civilization…


“Trust your heart if the seas catch fire, live by love though the stars walk backward.”
e.e. cummings

…….until next time, dearest Mary: “listen: there’s a hell
of a good universe next door; let’s go”
e.e. again…….

16 responses »

  1. There is a yellow brick road. There is an Emerald city. There is “no place like home”. I see it all in the final happy photograph Tin Man. I’ve clicked my heels together! Virginia

      • I know of the darkness. It will be with me forever. Two years ago my daughter – my heart of hearts – died at home in my arms. People battle cancer. Roxanne faced it in a different way. We knew for a year there was no hope. She faced it with strength, beauty, grace, elegance, calmness, Negativity (as in fighting the battle) was not allowed into what was left of her life. During my cancer treatments she was there encouraging me … to fill our home with lighted candles and flowers. To go to the treatments wearing beautiful clothes. To challenge the ugliness and not be bowed down by it. For us it was the only way to keep the dark night at bay. When it was over I came down stairs and talked to her step-children. I had them turn on every light in her beautiful home. I had them light every candle, and put on her favorite music – loud and clear. She was NOT going to quietly into that dark night.
        So please Mr. Tin Man everyday light lots of candles and drive away the darkness. With much concern – your Virginia

      • Oh dearest Virginia……….I always wanted to ask how you lost your daughter; however, did not know the way. Thank you so for sharing………I knew that you had to have been there to guide the way…..I see it in your words, in your zest for life, you carry this moment in your heart forever. She was embraced with your love from the moment of conception to the moment of passing. YOU have been given to all of us as a gift of love, compassion and unimaginable strength. We shall keep the darkness at bay………..we shall light the way……through the miles I hold your hand and lift my head to gaze at the light with you…..

  2. Oh Emil. How glorious to read on thanksgiving day. This shld be read at my memorial! U are do dear to me. How do I deserve you. My love. MM

      • The touching response from Virginia was unforgettable. Deeply moving. Amazing how words can move us to places we never knew we had. I am forever indebted to you and August. Your cottage awaits you. And we await your next magical visit when love and peace surrounds each interaction. What a perfect blog post to read on thanksgiving day. I am “blessed.”…………. Uh huh.

  3. You are most fortunate that someone believed in you, and wise that you know it, so that it can be efficacious in your life.
    She is obviously a beautiful person outside (from your photo) and a beautiful person inside (from your testimony).
    Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours all year long, Emil.

  4. Pingback: Wolff’s Apple House « Tales and Travels of the Tinman

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s