Wednesday, August 8, 2007


Earlier this eveing I was out at Zephyr Farm, our cooperative,organic, farm. The land is owned by dear friends. John, Robin and Sue, about 55 acres. We plant 1-2 acres.

This evening was very life-giving for me. I've been reflecting on how energizing it was. We've had a lot of rain here, after drought conditions, and so there was a window of opportunity to harvest before more rain tonight. I felt tired, and considered not going, but I'm glad I did.

A bunch of dear folks were there when I arrived. We all took on various tasks. I harvested some sweet corn. It seemed that everywhere I looked were plump ears. Too many to pick. Overwhelming abundance. Others harvest cucumbers, beans, basil and trellised tomatoes.

The plants seemed happy about the rain. They responded with incredible growth. The two Border Collies arrived, Kip the Elder and his "sister", Bella, the irrepressible Border Collie puppy. They were closely followed by Robin and her two daughters. There was a lot of friendly chatter and silliness. We were all happy like the plants. We were all growing. I felt like the caring and the fun I was experiencing was like a deep soaking rain. When I left, my Spirit felt refresshed.

On the way home, I was reflecting on the natural cycles I'm learned to experience at Zephyr farm. The resident Zehperites welcome the chance to share these cycles with people of all levels of experience. Thinking of the last year I recall the carrot harvest, in the fall. My son and his friends pitchforking the sweet roots out of the ground, making a pile of "weird-looking" carrots. I recall planting the garlic, so it could "sleep" through the winter, going out in the snow to cover the garlic bed with straw. Spring came and there's the praire burn. A cleansing after a long winter. I missed this one with my broken foot. I missed the planting for the same reason. Now it's tending the plants, nurturing them and harvesting the gifts they give us. Now its sweet corn, beens, cukes. In a few weeks, it will be tomatoes. Lots of tomatoes. Then squash and pumpkins. And the harvest continues. Then it gets chilly, the first frost and cleanup, getting ready for winter. And during winter, I sip tea and imagine what's happening in the frozen soil and enjoy the bounty that is canned and frozen. Gifts from God, all of it.


Suzy said...

But I don't get it. When does Monsanto get their cut?

poodledoc said...

haha! No Monsanto on the farm, perhaps some of the surrounding farms. I did notice quite a lot of tobacco in the area. Tobacco revenue really helps strapped farmers. It's worth a lot. Disturbs me.

Suzy said...

Wendell Berry writes quite a bit about tobacco farming.

Actually, my understanding is that Monsanto has been quietly buying up the patents on heirloom varieties of seeds, so even buying seeds from Johnnie's is supporting Monsanto.