Monday, March 7, 2016

Short Spring Ride

Spring is easing in on the land. After dark personal winter but having mild winter weather instead of the forecasted nasty snow and cold, the pretty weekend felt like all winter was fading. DH needed a break from son #2 kitchen rebuild, and so I drove us to the farm to check on some bulldozing being done there. The air was warm but the furious wind was a March wind for sure.

Winter wheat was making tiny shoots like green spears reaching for the heavens. Yellow and white daffodils hugged farm house foundations waiting for lilac and tulips and forsythia to come. Contented cows rested on grasses mixed with saffron shades of dead growth slowly being replaced by spring greens. Once at the farm, the bulldozer was in action even on Sunday since the coming week is to be all rain. He worked while he could. He had already recovered much land, reshaping berms and dips like a boy with modeling clay. 

The black earth waited for seeds. The whole field seemed to quiver with expectation of growth. It looked still and lifeless, but the farmers knew life rumbled beneath. After a short bulldozing conference, we had time and inclination to drive about the other farms of the area which we had not done in years. DH named people who had once lived there. Even though the Johnsons might have lived on a piece of land for a long while, it might still be called “the Cantor place” or some such.

Nearby was once a tiny town called Kimball. It set as close the railroad tracks as possible without interrupting trains. It had a grocery, a barber, a small school house, a church at one time. Now it is practically a ghost town with abandoned homes and barns falling in on themselves. One house caught my eye, talking to me, calling to me about the woman who lived there once…how she worked flowers at her fence, at her door step, how she gathered eggs from hens that roamed among the flowers eating bugs on summer days.

We hated to cut the reverie short but needed to get on to check in at assisted living for his dad who will be 100 in May and my mother’s for quick visits before heading back to the kitchen job where sheetrock mud was drying. It felt good for a few hours to smell turned earth, feel wind on faces, to know that life rolls on with or without our permission. 


Rebecca said...

Oh, my! If I could walk on uneven ground w/o irritating my hip or knee, I would have loved to have been on that site with you. I can't tell you how much nostalgia I experienced looking at that abandoned house; imagining the families who once milked the life out of the land...What's going to happen there? Why the bulldozing (or did I skip something)?

Elephant's Child said...

What an absolutely delightful outing you took us on. Thank you. Lots.
I do hope that autumn can push summer out the door here. Soon.

Linda O'Connell said...

These road trips are my favorite, and they do inspire poems and stories.

BECKY said...

I love your road trip posts, too, like Linda. AND I love photos of old houses and barns, and I wonder too about who lived in them, what their lives were like, etc. Thanks, Claudia for this lovely trip!

Sioux said...

Claudia--It sounds like a great little trip. I love the photos, especially the 6th one.

Lisa Ricard Claro said...

Simply put, I loved this whole post. Your prose drew me in from start to finish and made me wish I was with you. And the photos! Oh, my goodness! I saw a hundred stories in those photos.

Donna Volkenannt said...

Lovely post, Claudia, both thoughts and photos. There's something about spring flowers that make me feel alive. I love your line: "Life rolls on, with or without our permission."
Hope you are doing well.

Marylin Warner said...

The pictures of the Kimball Bible Church and the old house with the daffodils in front reminded me so much of the rural backroads of southeast Kansas, Claudia.
Here in Colorado, after 14" of snow one weekend in February, we are now dry and in need of rain. Our hyacinths are all blooming, and also a few crocuses, and the prediction now is for a spring snowstorm next Friday.