A hermit who had retreated from civilization lived in a small log cabin. In it he lived his modest life to study and gain knowledge. He had built it from cedar wood, which he had found near the hut in a small cedar forest. After a severe winter, when he had to make a few small repairs again, he went into the cedar forest and cut a tree. He only took as much as he needed to make some boards or something. He left the rest so that others could help themselves to the cut tree. That's how he's been doing it for years. But not only to help himself at the cedar forest he came there, but also to walk, to enjoy the pleasant smell of the trees and to enjoy a nice day. He watched the animals of the forest and the other roommates.
But the hermit was not the only one living near the forest. An adjoining small village not far from the forest had settled before times. They were nice people who left the hermit alone because they knew how important his work was to him. He lived up there and they lived down there, all in harmony with the cedar forest, for many a carpenter came to cut a tree to make a table or cupboard. The inhabitants of the village only took as much as they needed because they knew how important the forest was to them. He gave wood and peace and made sure that animals could hide there, which otherwise found no other place. The farmers also found food to keep them alive, and some feasts were served with a small deer.
One day a stranger came to the village and asked for a home. Like the other inhabitants, he wanted to build himself a small house and look for a job to become part of the community. The inhabitants of the village agreed and welcomed him warmly. So he set out with a small axe to smash boards so that he could build himself his small home. He went up to the forest, put on the axe and cut down a tree. He chopped it into handy little boards and went back to the village. After one month he had finished the house and was visibly impressed by his small work. Now he wanted to take care of a job, because until then he had always been supplied with food by his friendly neighbours and did not want to burden them any further. So he went to the village centre and asked about a job. But everywhere there were already carpenters, bricklayers and bakers. There was also a tailor, someone who tilled the fields, and a teacher. All the work that existed had already been occupied by other members of the village and even the position of the hermit was already occupied. Nowhere did man find a job and so in the evening he retired to his new hut to think about this problem in bed.
The next morning he got up cheerfully, because at night a great idea in a dream. If he couldn't find work. he'll just make one up. And so he took his little axe and went up. to the cedar forest. Here he began to cut down three trees and turn them into ordinary trees. wood and piles. Thereupon he dug deep holes around the forest and rammed the stakes in one by one. After a break on Afternoon, which he had used to get nails from the blacksmith in the village, he started to hit the woods against the recessed stakes. He built a solid and stable fence around the cedar forest. The inhabitants of the village, why one should build a fence around the forest, but they did the critical thoughts with the fact that the new occupant may only be the animals of the forest. Because it had already happened several times that some wild wolves had torn a deer or wild boar that had spread too far out out of the safe forest. So they went on with their daily work and thought nothing more of it. But the inhabitant was happy about his and went to bed in the evening in a cheerful mood.
The next day the hermit wanted to get some small branches for a fire in the cedar forest, because he planned to make himself some soup. So it came that he met the eager worker at the edge of the forest and got into conversation with him. He would like to enter the forest to collect the wood, but would not like to climb over the fence. The back of the hermit is no longer the youngest either, the fence builder should understand that. He nodded eagerly and pointed to a goal. There the hermit could go in and out as he liked. However, since the resident still had to pay the blacksmith's nails, he would demand a small entrance fee in order to be able to pay the debts. The hermit looked in amazement and thought quietly into himself for a while. The inhabitants also wanted to ensure that the cedar forest was well cared for in the future and to create a park in which the inhabitants of the village and of course also the hermits could wander around. He too would have to work and earn his meals. The hermit nodded at the arguments and finally handed over a small fee. The other members of the village also paid when they wanted to go into the forest and also when a little displeasure spread, they continued to say nothing. Of course, everyone had the right to do a job and they didn't want to deny that to anyone, even if this work somehow didn't fit into their community.
So some years passed and the cedar forest changed strongly. First, the owner of the cedar forest paid the debts to the blacksmith. Then he asked the hunter if he wanted to work for him as a forester. He could earn a lot more than he does now. He agreed, because the temptation to participate in the profit was too great. So he also acted with the carpenter, the gardener and others. Many inhabitants of the village now worked for the new owner of the forest and earned their wages. In most cases, the work did not differ from the previous one, because they had also worked as carpenters or similar before. So the employees thought nothing of it and did not want to hear the criticism of the remaining members of the village, who still had to pay for admission to the forest.
Also the city had grown in the last years, because it had gotten around that the cedar forest was very beautifully maintained and one could observe the animals in peace. That it cost something did not bother anyone else, because who wanted a messy cedar forest, where the animals lived, how they liked it and you could stumble over dead trees and break your foot. They preferred ways and someone who took care that everything went right. What did they want to hear about freedom when they could walk safely through the forest. Several years passed and the children of the inhabitants did not know the forest any different. Some old people told at the fireplace how it had been then, where everyone had been allowed to enter the cedar forest and there had been no fences, parks and paths. Where stones lay, as they had always been and trees had grown through nature, as they wanted. The children then laughed softly inside themselves and went to bed without thinking further about the old stories. They loved the forest as it was and they wanted it to stay that way. The fact that the forest owner earned very well from it did not disturb them in the least.
But there was one person who was bothered that the forest had changed so much. The hermit sat alone and saddened in front of his little hut and looked down to the forest. Crowds of people crowded around the entrance and booths shot out of the ground wherever you looked. Hustle and bustle everywhere. There was no place where there was not at least one person who wanted to run a business or visit the cedar forest. He shook his head and longed for the old days when he had been able to walk freely in the forest, and an unspeakable sadness overcame him, prompting him to go back to his hut and pack his things. After some time he stood again at the house entrance and turned once more to the cedar forest. He closed his hut, took a small piece of wood from the bench on which he had sat so often, and put it in his travel bag. He hadn't packed much, just the essentials. A little food and something to wash on the way. Two or three books he loved and that little piece of cedar on which so many memories hung. He left the village, its inhabitants and the successful businessman behind to find a new cedar forest. Always with the thought that he had the possibility to go into the forest at any time, as he liked it.
 Part of the Photography The Hermit of Maine playing his unique instrument, combination of two organs and a piano. Freeport, Maine by Paul Carter, 1936