Friday, January 15, 2016

Plowing The Field




You can't keep plowing a field. A field has to have time to fallow, is what I told myself. But really what was happening was that the weeds were creeping in and I felt powerless to pluck them out, or squish the Colorado potato beetles.  Sometimes I forget the signs. I think I am suffering a terrible mortal illness. Malaise, which comes from the French.

Not writing is one of the signs.

I start thinking my writing desk is SO FAR away. It seems like it would take a person ages to reach it. Ages of ice.

Dummy.

I know what happens in the classic ecology study of Old Field Succession. The field relentlessly re-becomes forest.

So I'm back out here in the field, back in the saddle, with sweat and a scythe trying to get an edible harvest from the stony ground and trying to lasso the cows that are all over the place. This is a metaphor. The metaphor is drawn from agriculture and animal husbandry.

It would be easier to be a cowboy, than to write.  (And you get chaps.)

Sometimes I consider the hundreds of things I could do besides writing. I have a little notebook for this purpose, and I call my sister who is very generous with her patience. Let's see, I say, licking the pencil, There is storm water retention -- someone needs to work on that. 

Glaciers. 

Cataloging marine invertebrates. 

Inventing shit. 

But I just can't quit digging for roots and tubers with my trowel and a sharp stick. And I just got a gig blogging for Scholastic.

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