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South | North


SicklesI like to rise when the sun she rises
Early in the morning
I like to hear them small birds singing
Merrily upon the lay land
And hurrah! For the life of a country girl
And to ramble in the new mown hay.

In the spring we sow, at the harvest mow,
And that’s how the seasons around they go
But of all the times, if choose I may,
It’s to ramble in the new mown hay.

In the winter when the sky is grey,
We hedge and ditch our time away,
But in the summer when the sun shines gay,
We go rambling in the new mown hay.

~Enki Festival Songs

I think I have spent a fair portion of the Summer living in "a vanished world from a forgotten time."  We've watched our fair share of Tales from the Green Valley and Victorian Farm.  I've been captivated by them and the children have, too.  It's hard not to be--the people involved seem to really love their work and do it passionately, all the while recognizing the challenges of such lifestyles.  It has made me think about the place we live in and the luxuries we are afforded here.

While there are plenty of photo-essays that depict a gritty Appalachia, the reality for our family is slightly different.  We do battle poverty, daily, but we have many resources at our fingertips, beyond government services (and there are plenty of those).  I have access to more than a dozen apple trees, easily.  There are three pear trees at my disposal, multiple productive berry patches, grape vines, and folks with too much from their own gardens.  I canned tomatoes last week that I did not grow or buy.  I have butternut squash on my counter, too.

So, there is sharing and there is also the real-life experience of an agrarian culture.  We know when it is time to cut hay, we know when tobacco is ready (cancerous though it may be), and we know when people will have their gardens plowed by a real plow here in town.  I even recall watching a horse plow my great-great aunt's garden as a child.  These are things that are being lost to the world, which is a real shame.  Agricultural skills, even as simple as home gardening, are things no one can take away and can carry us through hard times with comfort.

Enki and Waldorf education, respectively, hold onto these traditions through their songs, stories, and verses.  The images are timeless, though time has clearly marched on from them.  As we were reading the Little House books through the Spring and Summer, we watched the pattern of the agricultural year time and again.  Laura trampled down the hay, Almanzo harrowed the fields, Ma Ingalls and Mother Wilder preserved the harvests, and Pa brought home the bacon.

I can't help but aspire to have some more of the skills we've seen demonstrated.  I'd really like to learn to make my own straw hats, like really.  I suppose this would be the time to get a bale of straw and see what I could do, but August is so full of other harvest tasks.  And there is my knitting I need to get back to.  Oh, but I'd love to see Roan at work at a real wood-wright's shop someday as he seems to love those things so much.  The children want to make a charcoal stack some time.  We've made our own charcoal, of sorts, from our small fire ring in the back yard.  And, of course, basic wood-splitting is a skill we all should have.

Just a lot on my mind here at the end of this long Summer.  I have planning to do, and I did plan--I have a movement circle for September.  And recorders are on their way soon!  There is so much I want to be and do, it's time to settle in and do it. 


Aug. 22nd, 2015 01:02 am (UTC)
I hope the focus and good energy stick around. This summer has been too much. :-) I kind of wish I lived during the time of rationing, so I understand. I don't think our country would be able to participate in something like that again--too much consumerism these days for people to really work out such projects.

A Blessed Wilderness

It was just like being in heaven, being in there. In those days there was no road. The park was all a blessed wilderness. I have often thought what a wonderful people we would have been if we had wanted to keep it that way.

~Adolph Murie, biologist, on Denali


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