Spiritual Companion

September Newsletter 2019


On Saturday, August 17, following a warm welcome and tour from the Grindle family, who purchased the school property, a reunion of Collins Brook School was held at Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park in Freeport.

Original driveway, farmhouse and barn
A week before our reunion I read a timely article called Rediscovering the Truth of a Vision Dulled by Time by Lucy Dacus in the Sunday New York Times: “… an anniversary is a call to action – to remember, and celebrate if possible. Remembrance is one of the most powerful tools we have. Revisiting the past, intentionally, allows us to excavate more of the truth each time we look back. The story isn’t over. we know the vision has yet to be fully realized. It cannot be re-created, but it can be re-examined. With hope, it will continue to reignite the desire in us together and share, to find solace and feel free, even if momentarily."

50 years later, alumni of Freeport’s ‘free’ school reunite  
By Hannah LaClaire

Collins Brook School alumni and staff in an undated photo. (Courtesy of Alumni of Collins Brook School 1968-1976 Facebook page)

"Collins Brook School opened in Freeport in 1969, the same year as Woodstock, in the midst of what Watson said was a “free school movement,” based off of the Summerhill School in England, which began in 1921 and is still operational today. It is, according to its website, a “democratic, self-governing school in which the adults and children have equal status. … The school’s philosophy is to allow freedom for the individual — each child being able take their own path in life, and following their own interests to develop into the person that they personally feel that they are meant to be.” Collins Brook, which only stayed open for seven years, operated similarly. 
Saturday, a group of 25 to 30 former Collins Brook students and staff plan to gather at the former school site, which is now privately owned, for their 50th reunion, which they expect may be their last."

We’re Gainin’:

Collins Brook, A Maine Free School
A Memoir

Table of Contents
 Preface: Susy Dolloff
Forward: Barry Daniels

 Part I

1                                  Bean Boots
2                                  Neill and The Pioneers
3                                  Changin’ Times
4                                  The Cushing Farm
5                                  Going Up
Part II
6                                  We’re Open 1969 - 70
7                                  Animal Pancakes 1970 - 71
8                                  Freya the Newfoundland 1971 - 72
9                                  The Red Dragon 1972 - 73              
10                                Dancing on the Blue Carpet 1973 - 74
11                                Whipped Cream and Pine Needles 1974 - 75
12                                Flying Geodesic Domes 1975 - 76
Part III
13                                Lonely Land 
14                                Under the Bridge
15                                Spiritually Alive

Available soon in local independent bookstores and Amazon.
Kindle version is available now.

Radios played when we worked, songs like Green, Green Rocky Road; Mr. Noah, other Van Ronk and Tom Rush songs, Goin’ Up Country; The Beatles’ With A Little Help from My Friends, Crosby, Stills & Nash’s Teach Your Children, Mimi and Richard Farina's Reflections in a Crystal Wind, John Denver’s This Old Farm, with the telling line,Sometimes this old farm feels like a long-lost friend, Lean on Me, and later, Jackson Browne’s After the Deluge.

I played these songs at our reunion:
Our House
Teach Your Children
The Honor of Your Company
Here Comes the Sun
Come Together
Maxwell’s Silver Hammer
Lean on Me
Octopus’s Garden
Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
Let It Be
Penny Lane
Mr. Tambourine Man
Just Like a Woman
Visions of Johanna
The Times They Are a-Changin’
Blowin' in the Wind
Hotel California
Goin’ Up Country
Bridge over Trouble Waters
Green, Green, Rocky Road
You've got a Friend
Urge for Going
Michael Row the Boat Shore
This Land is Your land
Pack Up Your Sorrows
Reflections in a Crystal Wind
Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain
Hobo's Lullaby
City of New Orleans
Mr. Noah
Boulder to Birmingham
Up on Cripple Creek

We're Gainin' is a heartfelt reflection of an enormous endeavor that Jacob dared to dream possible. His passion is palpable, his vision admirable. A vividly personal account of the triumphs and defeats shared with honesty and humility. The massive burden Jacob carried through sheer willpower and commitment demonstrates his resilience, faith, courage and dedication to something bigger than himself. After reading We're Gainin', I feel humbled, moved and inspired.
Tasha Hughes, Collins Brook student

15 Recorded Morning Blessing Gift Meditations
Now Available on Insight Timer,
the free meditation phone app

Morning Blessing Gifts awaken, stimulate and deepen meditation and spiritual practice. In the tradition of Robert Frost and Wendell Berry, poetic images and personal experiences of New England nature, the birds, animals, woods, and beaches of coastal Maine, awakens listeners to begin their day nurtured and encouraged to be themselves, joined with like-minded souls. The meditations provide a friendly, comforting and accessible way to wake up and affirm the whole self. Each blessing has seven brief paragraphs that offer a welcome to the day, a silent meditation, affirmations of body, heart and soul, a blessing and a gift for each day. Begins and ends with a ring of a singing bowl.

This fall I continue teaching at Chime and the Center for Grieving Children. I welcome the new students and volunteers.






Copyright © 2018
Rev. Dr. Jacob Watson

Thank you for being a valued member of our list! You are receiving this Newsletter because you have signed up for it.

If you wish to unsubscribe please click the button below.

Our mailing address is:

Jacob Watson
41 Glenwood Avenue
Portland, Maine 04103

Telephone: 207-761-2522



Please share this Newsletter (see "forward to a friend" above) and encourage others to sign up on our website:www.revjacobwatson

Email Marketing Powered by MailChimp

This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
Rev. Jacob Watson · 41 Glenwood Avenue · Portland, ME 04103 · USA

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp