Saturday, April 9, 2011
"The Amish farmer says his own labor is part of his profit, not part of his costs." Gene Logsdon "Green Fields, Red Ink" 1986 The Farmer needs the dirt as much as the dirt needs him. These are the windy new days of Spring. Exhileration and trepidation meet in the breaking of new ground. Will the seedlings do well here? Will they take? There is a good grubby-ness to the dirt beneath the fingers. Mothers pause before asking children to wash away this proof of noble bouts in the field... How many winter evenings by the fire have been spent planning and pointing toward this day! There is a cozy familiarity the farmer now has with his boots. Every time he slips into them, to check on the ewes, or water the seedlings, or transplant the brassicas...it's like coming home. As if he's at sea when he's not in his boots. We are all acquainting ourselves with the rythmn of the work now on the farm. The new strawberry plants are in, the onion sets and starts have been planted, the early broccoli and cauliflower and lettuces are now in, ribbons of potatoes have been mounded over...and where once there was just a wasteland of sandy soil...a garden is in its infancy. "Sustainable farms are to today's headlong rush toward global destruction what the monastaries were to the Dark Ages: places to preserve human skills and crafts until some semblance of common sense and common purpose returns to the public mind." Gene Logsdon, Intro to "Living at Nature's Pace"