Seeds, weeds and geraniums

I

Belly to the soil, fingers in the trough.

Depth and rates to check. Seeds in soil.

Each row rises, orderly and only the

weeds run wild. Taunting. Surviving.

 

II

No weeds dare grow in her gardens.

Fierce with knife, spoon and spade.

Grandma grew flowers, vegs and fruit.

Weeds were banished from her order.

 

III

She hated to see them die in fall.

The geraniums in her random pots.

So in they came, Scraggly. Stinky.

Living in a year round summer.

 

IV

“Can’t you just….?’ they asked knowing.

Knowing the blank would be always that.

“Just be tame?” or “Just be unlike me?”

I’m sure I’ll always be a weed there,

tossing out the order of someone’s

beloved garden. A dandelion blooming

through cement cracks, a sunflower

in the highway median. Something not

quite right, not really belonging there

and yet thriving where you said I would

die…or where you wanted me to not be.

`

V

Seeding requires faith. You gotta let em grow.

No diggin’ them up to see ‘wassup’ when in

the soil they are restin’ dark and moist.

 

Seeding requires patience. You gotta let them go.

No foolin’ with them once they start to come up

trusting their roots and their leaves to reach.

 

Seeding has one hand in the soil and one eye

on the sky…prayers of hope rise up and

tears sometimes wash the dirt back down.

 

But when they rise up, tall and reaching

for the sun’s light to follow, then we see

what the hard work of faith can show!

 

I am hosting Poetics tonight for dVerse and I’m feeling in the mood for some short stuff…enjoy the other poetry, and plant those words and poems people!

 

Learning how to check the seeds close up!

Learning how to check the seeds close up!

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Seeding Poetry

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It’s a Bourgot, well whaddya know?

9000 acres yet to go…seeding whoa!

Got half done and the rain came down.

 

Standing in the sun’s half light.

Supper at dusk, seeding half the night.

Driving through the dust, it’s gotta go!

 

Night shift is when the wrecks come.

They sure ain’t a lot of fun, son.

It’s a Bourgot, well whaddya know?

 

Doing some slant poetry for Meeting At The Bar.  Because I missed Poetics, “It’s Quoteable” with Mary I have submitted a late one below.

 

This is one of my husband’s favorite farming songs, by a Canadian band:

 

Thank you Lord, for the blessings in our lives.

For those things which You bless us richly.

That we do not deserve, nor are worthy of.

 

Thank you Lord, for the blessings in our lives.

Those things which make us stronger, better.

That which gives us character and scars too.

 

Thank you Lord, for the blessings in our lives.

Those things which we worry about, and pass us by.

Those things which never pass, and leave us in peace.

 

Thank you Lord, for the life and the way of life.

The land, the animals and our family together.

Those things which witness to Your greatness.

 

This is part of our family, poeticized and lengthened. Enjoy!

 

And my quote, from that song,

Thank you lord for the sun
For giving life to the seeds I sow
It’s the only life I know
Thanks again for the rain
For giving hope to the work I do



mêkwayâhtik ᒣᑲᐧᔮᐦᑎᐠ

When I was growing up trees were precious.

Almost family. They were cherished. Loved.

Each year on the bare plains we’d plant them.

Hundreds sent from the government program.

“Shelter belt” planting they called it. We just

said it was hard work. Planting trees in the soil

that wanted nothing to do with their roots or

needs. The soil wanting to grow grass and blow

across the skies in the summerfallow winds.

Little dams, shelters of cedar shakes and water.

We watered and weeded. Watered and weeded.

Some lived. Most died. We kept trying.

 

Fast forward some years. To river valleys. Full of

trees. Trees growing tall sheltering herons, hawks,

eagles and water fowl. Felled by winds, and dragged

down by floods. Each one a cottonwood of rotten

heart or a bended stubborn willow. No spruce or

pine to scent the air. Cottonwood fluff, sticky

pods everywhere in spring. And leaves.

 

Seeing them for the first time, red woods, was awe.

I looked up and up and up and the tops swayed.

Vertigo took me and I reached out to hold on.

And it was then that I felt the heart of the tree.

The warmth of sun on bark, the hum of insects.

The chatter of birds. The smell of pitch. Sticky.

Pinching bruised branches of cedar. Chewing

on willow bark. Brushing the branches of silver

willow as we ride looking for the cows.

 

Trees grow here at the drop of a hat. Sometimes

they drop the hat and grow if you are to slow

in mowing the lawn or grazing the pasture.

They grow and grow and wait to take back

their land from the humans and their cutting

kind. Like the Ents they surge ever forward

waiting to take back what was once theirs.

Even the bedrock is not immune to their

seeking roots. Massive rocks crack, fill

and then the seed sets. Grows. Cracks.

 

Dams abandoned. Indestructible to the

tools of human kind, fall stone by stone

to the roots of a maple sapling, to the

questing reach of the trailing roots of pine.

Four pages of words about trees in Cree.

Phrases, sayings, things we do and eat.

Women chew birch bark patterns.

Their mouths telling stories in each bite.

Art work for all to see and so few to

understand. The vast plains ache for the

trees that were taken from their coulees and

draws. Pioneers desperate for wood, dug

deep and made due with sod and dried

manure. Longing for the luxury of trees.

Ukrainian settlers chose the lands with trees.

After all in their homeland the trees

were the property of the rich, the important.

Their value stood tall and proud, rooted.

 

The big farms hate corners. They hate to turn.

The plow down the old homesteads. The

carefully tended old windbreaks and shelter

belts burned and rolled under. A few acres

more to put into grains and oilseeds. And

yet each spring their kind spring up, early.

They tangle up the implements and I quietly

cheer them on. Go trees! Grow trees! Go!

 

A tree hugger to the core, I adore them from

root to thorn, bramble to bloom. sap to fruit.

Trees must be a part of my genetic memory.

They are wound tight around my DNA like

the tangled roots of a spruce tree. Holding

on to the side of a mountain. Taking it down

one crack at a time.  Breaking it into soil.

 

Bjorn has us writing about trees over at dVerse. And I’m afraid this got a bit epic. I was overwhelmed with ideas and just started writing, letting the thoughts and ideas flow. This is my rambling poetic thoughts about trees. And I may do a part two or three, even four!

 

mêkwayâhtik ᒣᑲᐧᔮᐦᑎᐠ

Among the trees.

http://visionquest.pagc.sk.ca/index.asp?page=4&m=1&ln=1

Birch Bark Biting

High Cotton

With Real Toads Photo Prompt, photo by Ellen's Edge "Cotton"

 

I never knew when I was young what it meant

to be ‘walking in high cotton’ until I saw

the waves of cotton fields across the

panhandle of northern Texas.

 

We stopped by the road to pick a few to see

if they were really cottony soft and white.

Flat horizon and  cotton as far as you

could see, it went forever and then.

 

Older now I know, that high cotton means work,

hard and back breaking.  Even with machines

there is nothing easy about cotton but

how it feels combed and smooth.

 

“Walking in high cotton” means a bumper crop

with the hard work still to come and still

we grow it, we pick it and we bale it.

Sell it and someone wears it.

 

I feel like those cotton fields sometimes,

do different from a distance than close

up and in your hands. The hard and

the soft grow together here.

 

We don’t grow cotton on the northern plains,

we grow corn, soy beans, hay and canola.

We raise cows, hogs, chickens and

sometimes we raise hell.

 

We dance in the fields and in the dirt here.

We chase the cows and fix the fence.

We raise our kids and our dogs

and we love on the land.

 

Remembering the first time I saw cotton fields as we drove across Texas as a child.  I thought the white and black fields would never end under that flat horizoned sky.  Those endless plains on that endless drive keeps me seeking hills and trees but it reminds me too that we who farm and ranch do it because we love it.  Copyright 2012 Shanyn Silinski.  Prompt from With Real Toads today.