Watch with Me
and six other stories of the yet-remembered Ptolemy Proudfoot and His Wife, Miss Minnie, Nee Quinch
By Wendell Berry
Tol was overabundant in both size and strength. And perhaps because animate creatures tended to get out of his way, he paid not much attention to himself. He damaged his clothes just by being in them, as though surprising them by an assortment of stresses and strains for which they had not been adequately prepared. The people around Port William respected Tol as a farmer; they loved to tell and retell and hear and hear again the tales of his great strength; they were amused by the looks of him, by his good humor, and by his outsized fumblings and foibles. But never, for a long time, would any of them have suspected that his great bulk might embody tender feelings.
But Tol did embody tender feelings, and very powerful tender feelings they were. For Tol, through many years, had maintained somewhere about the center of himself a most noble and humble and never-mentioned admiration for Miss Minnie Quinch."