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DHMC's wooded setting inspires a poem

I'm not really a poet, I just occasionally burst forth," says Virginia Little (pictured above), the author of "Road Map to the Hospital." She has lived in Hanover, N.H., for the past six years—at Kendal, a retirement community—but she spent most of her life in urban and semi-urban areas. She was inspired to write the poem about DHMC, she says, because "I wasn't used to approaching a hospital through a virgin forest."

Photo: Jon Gilbert Fox

When she was considering the move north from Tenafly, N.J., a friend helped her secure her apartment at Kendal. "I took it sight unseen," Little says. "I've been very glad ever since."

Little was born in England, but moved to Granville, Ohio— where her parents were from—when she was a year and a half old and lived there until she was 12. Her next move was to New York City. "It was during World War I," she says. She earned a B.A. in English from New York University, worked for 25 years as a distribution manager for the Industrial Press, a technicalbook publishing company in New York, and then spent 12 years as a reference librarian in Englewood, N.J.

"I've done a little writing," she admits, and has had two or three "slightly amusing essays," published in House Beautiful and the Christian Science Monitor. When she's not writing, Little can often be found painting, and her colorful landscapes and still lifes grace her apartment walls. Maybe a painting of DHMC's forested environs will be her next creative effort . . .

Road Map to the Hospital

From Highway One-Twenty, drive off to the right
And follow the road where the woods come in sight.
There the towering oaks and the hemlocks appear—
Why, Pocahantas herself would be at home here!
The forest primeval? No, the Clinic's not far,
In the massive domain where the health-givers are.
On through thicket and glade, in the sunshine and shade,
The trees touched with sun, all golden and jade,
Past the woods to the sign for Parking Lot B:
You are there. You've arrived! You're at DHMC!

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