Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Thoughts while cleaning up the corn patch

" Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness..." that's the poem that comes to mind as I head out to the corn patch very early to take advantage of the coolness before the sun burns off the mists.

While I pull out the spent corn stalks , I think about all the buttery ears of corn this patch has provided for my family this summer and the stack of packages of corn in the freezer. I notice the carefully spaced rows which were planted by my daughter while we were away this spring during planting time. She placed each kernel by hand and was so proud her work - her first corn patch !

Even though the plants are no longer useful to us, they continue feed someone. Buster, the pony, is snacking on the leaves and hoping to find a small corncob which sometimes forms after the big ones have been harvested.

The rest of the stalks ( and weeds ) are going to be chipped and composted, to nourish the garden in the form of compost and to enrich the soil for next year's crop of vegetables.

It makes me think of a passage I read just this morning in Making it Home by Lars Nordström.
" I remember a floor mosaic in the ruin of a Roman villa I once saw on Cyprus. There, a seated Dionysus, crowned with a wreath of grape leaves and holding clusters of grapes,has handed the recling nymph Akme a bowl of wine.There is no doubt in my mind that the ancients knew the gift was sacred. Living here I am beginning to understand that I have always wanted to touch the flow of life symbolized by that image, that what I htought were mundane things like food, shelter, and daily routines actually belong to that sacred river that flows below us. When you start eating and drinking out of your own hands, you gradually discover that you are flowing through something much larger than yourself, that something is holding you, carrying you as you hold it. "

" Eating and drinking out of your own hands " - what a lovely image for us as we prepare for our month of local eating and drinking ,becoming aware of who produces our food and where it comes from, and as we plan and prepare each meal, connecting to that river of life that sustains and carries us.