As Washington burns, America’s farmers hold the line
“Day is dying in the west.”
By a quiet country road, we’re walking in evening’s light. Dust of very earth, it billows, clouds rolling, as a great, red combine holds a straight line. Beside the road, three watchers.
It’s the dinner crew.
Over sprawling fields, that light. It shines, and I say it out loud to The Mister, “That’s beautiful! An American tableau, the farmer out harvesting his crops.”
Beside me, he nods. “It is.” And we keep walking.
We pass them again, that merry, little band. They offer us fruit, cheese, and water. It’s country hospitality, an honest, lovely thing. Their smiles are warm, faces happy, so we stop to visit for a golden moment. And the combine just keeps rolling on, gobbling beans.
At the edge of our country road, I feel it. A bone-deep appreciation, a real kind of awe for the folks that truly make America great. For the simple, ordinary men and women who plant seeds and grow food. Who teach and heal and build and create and administer and serve, all of this while our nation’s in crisis.
As Washington, D.C., burns. As talking heads spin and dissemble and shout and cajole, this is what I say to that farmer’s wife ’round the corner and down the road, “Even politicians need to eat, don’t they? They’re not so big that they don’t need you.”
Need our farmers, the people who work the land. Who get dirty.
It’s easy to think that the whole world is on fire, that it’s all goin’ to the hot place in a hand basket.
It’s hard to remember that there’s just so much good. So many good people in this world.
It’s easy to turn cynical. To be sarcastic and sharp. It’s hard to stay soft where it matters…in the heart.
We turn the corner. We’re approaching The Three when I look up, and I see a bit of glory. It’s the maple out in front, bright arms reaching to the sky. The evening sun is gilding its branches. And just there? The front door of our home.
We’re done walking now. It’s time to turn in, for the road, always and ever, leads us Home. And one day, Heaven.