Als ich wisse das Morgen der Erde enden wuerde, immernoch wurd ich mein Apfelbaum pflanzen.

Even if I knew the world would perish tomorrow, I would still plant my apple tree. - Martin Luther

"Factory work's easier on the back, and I don't mind it, understand, but a man becomes what he does. Got to watch that. That's why I keep at farmin' although the crops haven't ever throve. It's the doin' that's important." Madison Wheeler in Blue Highways by William Least Heat Moon

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Digging Up the Past

I've been reading a lot about writing lately, and my hands have been in the dirt a lot too.  Growing things and growing words are both gifts I get from my father.  While planting the new raspberry canes this evening I found myself with a clear memory of helping my dad plant new pine trees in our Christmas tree patch.  Last week I helped Readlyn plant a Sugar Maple she'd brought home in honor of Arbor Day. 

My grandfather is 99, and is nearing the end.  It is a strange and unsettling thing indeed to see the generations so clearly shift places.  Although my dad is still extremely strong, he will one day be frail and weak like my Pap.  So thankful for the memories I have, and the ones we're still creating. 

The Woodsman and I are now the ones who plant the memories with our children.  What will my kids remember?  So, in honor of the best farmer I know and the heart of all of my crazy homesteading lifestyle choices - a poem about the most important thing we grow in life - love.

Dig in Deep

 I sink the spade into the soft, dark earth
 and become a girl of six. 
 Dad's work worn heel
against smooth metal.
The scrape of stone and iron
spark present and past.
Knees damp in the tender spring evening -
scarred, calloused hands
- cuts and burns like badges of honor -
guide small ones
cradle the roots, tuck in the soil
One foot
strong and booted
the other 
small, dirty and bare
tamp in the soil together.
Growing more than trees.


  1. I just found your blog because apparently you found mine. Lovely post. We seem to have much in common as I am a teacher, too. I especially enjoyed your post about children and the damage of television and the importance of chores. You're speaking from my soapbox. Glad I found you.

    1. Thanks. I was reading your posts last night. I really enjoy reading yours too. Glad to have found eachother. Isn't this blogging thing a blast. It's so much fun to be writing again. Thanks for thinking that what I have to say is valuable enough to read.