Suddenly, gray clouds have fled,
the sky is achingly blue and white,
great hulking machines have come
rocking into endless fields of
sun ripened wheat.
Harvest is upon us.
We had been living in a dream,
pretending, in that blissfully
rainy May, that we lived somewhere
to the north of this precious prairie.
June arrived, with the south wind
in tow, and yanked us forward
to the reality that is wheat harvest
on these Great Plains.
Despite what we now know
about the down sides of large
despite being firmly entrenched
in the battle to save the blessed earth,
despite knowing better,
harvest still tugs at our hearts:
fresh food from the garden,
meals eaten in the field, off the
tailgate of a pickup,
chaff in your hair, your eyes,
down the back of your shirt, itchy,
the low drone of the combine and
the screech of the header gear,
watching the clouds building in the west,
reaching a hand into spilling rivers of grain,
a father's tired smile at the end of the day,
a windblown ride in the wheat truck.
So many good memories tied into
this time, these sounds, these smells.