What was that line about? Well, a BuzzFeed reader notes that similarly poetical, monosyllabic praise for Michigan’s topography can be found in Ernest Hemingway’s Nick Adams stories, set on the Upper Peninsula in the years after the First World War.
“As a kid educated in Michigan in the 60s, I’m willing to bet (not 10k though) that Mitt read the Nick Adams Michigan stories as required reading,” emails our correspondent, who also sends on an excerpt of the 1925 short story Big Two-Hearted River:
bq. There was no underbrush in the island of pine trees. The trunks of the trees went straight up or slanted toward each other. The trunks were straight and brown without branches. The branches were high above. Some interlocked to make a solid shadow on the brown forest floor. Around the grove of trees was a bare space. It was brown and soft under foot as Nick walked on it. This was the over-lapping of the pine needle floor extending out beyond the width of the high branches. The trees had grown tall and the branches moved high, leaving in the sun this bare space they had once covered with shadow. Sharp at the edge of this extension of the forest floor commenced the sweet fern.