Debby was a hill woman. All of her years were spent there among the ridges and hollows of the Ozarks. That’s all she knew of the world--the geography and love of the country. But her life contained every facet and color found in the outside world. Love, sex, religion, crime, sacrifice; it was all packaged up for her right there in Redbud Ridge.
Abstract from the novel:
Veering off the path, I started up the hill. When I came up to the spring where it started to form a small hole in the ground, all around it the ground was soft and spongy. I was careful not to step in a seep hole for I knew I could go in up to my knees. The jacks were up, but they were only pale green shoots. They hadn’t opened yet. White and yellow crocuses had just begun to bloom, but I didn’t pick them. I sat down on a rock and began to dream of Bud again. The woods were thick and dark all around me. If Bud would only come and find me here. I practiced posing, pulling my curls over my shoulder, hiding my bare feet under me.
Then, as if my dreaming was about to bear fruit, I heard a slight movement somewhere near, so light it could have been a bird’s wing brushing against twigs and new leaves. But I was alerted. I had the feeling that it was no bird, but somebody creeping through the bushes quiet as a cougar. In my mind I knew it wasn’t likely to be Bud, but I was so dopey from dreaming about it, I screamed out his name. The bushes parted, but it wasn’t Bud. That shaggy head appeared, and the tusks, and powerful dangling arms that had reached out for our Tenny.