Quick Reference

Time Period:
Painted about 1940 - 41.

Heath Pasture
Heath, MA

Oil on Canvas


Beech Tree

25 X 30

Grand Central Galleries (NYC),1945

Mrs. Wm. S. Allen



Burnt Hill, Heath pasture and Beech Trees were RSW's most prolific painting subjects.

Related Links

Featured Artwork: Mild Winter

RSW's Diary Comments

Mild Winter
Mild Winter sepia

"Painted about 1940 - 41. The Heath Pasture Beech Tree, ledges, band of hills etc. in winter, but with 'open' winter effect showing much of the pasture growth and coloring through the snow. A 'warm' cheerful canvas. Beech tree to the left of center. Bought in Nov. 1946, by Mrs. Wm. S. Allen, 491 Main St. Greenfield."

Additional Notes

Woodward wrote the buyer of this painting a "note" in response to a letter he had received. The women must of asked why there were no distinct mountain peaks in the painting because he goes into wonderful detail of the direction (southeast toward his beloved Buckland Hills!) his studio faced and the hills that can be seen . He then tells her what peaks could be seen to the left and right of the scope given in the painting. What is wonderful about this is his Heath Pasture Studio was aligned to give him a view of both his triumphant tree (the beech tree) and the hills from which he made a home! Leave it to him to find his ideal happy place, symbolism and all... Such is the life of a poet, is it not?

RSW letter
November 10, 1945 letter regarding November Paths

January 19, 1949

Dear Mrs.___________-
I am not in a situation this evening to write you the letter I have wanted to write since Christmas but having to be at my desk a short while I will send just a note to assure you that I deeply appreciate your writing me a message at Christmas time. It grieves me to learn that your husband passed on ahead of us a short while ago. I didn't know of this loss having come to you. May God give you comfort.

You speak of my Christmas card. It is a reproduction of a painting of mine owned by Robert Frost - who is a loved friend. No, the scene is not from my present home, but was made from near my late home in Buckland that burned a few years ago.

I am so pleased to have you speak of still enjoying the painting of the winter Beech tree which hangs in your room. So many of my canvases I continue to hear, keep living for long in the owners' affections. Although from my Heath Pasture, from where the picture was painted, I do see many prominent New England mountains, the blue band of your picture happens to be a section with no noted peaks. It is the line of hills South West of Heath, including the general section of Buckland, Ashfield and Hawley and Conway. A little farther to the right one would see Mt. Greylock and just to the left of the frame would be Mt. Tom, Mt. Haystack and Sugarloaf. This will let your imagination wander the farther, now as you glance at the painting! May the new year bring you comfort, peace and solace!

Robert Strong Woodward.