When grappling for a descriptive term to help you understand where we were, “as the crow flies” came to mind.
Approximately three to five miles southwest of Picher, OK, as the crow flies, we met Sherry Pierce. To reach her, we crossed a cattle guard and ambled across the gravel property entrance. She was attending to trash burning in a barrel at one of two trailers in a desolate setting, her dog skipping around at her side.
Sherry looked minutia-like against the vast gray sky, the empty acreage, vacant cattle trailers and the capable farm equipment scattered close by. Chat piles broke up the landscape to her north and east. As we drove up, rolled down the window, and explained our project she didn’t blink. An inner peace and easiness about her permeated our conversation.
After eight years of commuting to Joplin to care for animals every day, and helping her uncle and grandfather during nights and weekends, Sherry no longer lives at this location. Her grandfather has passed away; her reason for being there is gone, and she – along with her dog named Red Solo Cup – are now somewhere to the north and east a hundred miles. As the crow flies.
The animals who meet you are lucky, Sherry. You “fall in love with them.” You see the souls in their eyes.
Thanks for sharing your own soul with us when we showed up that day.