Planting Season
by Michael Escoubas
   after the watercolor by Sharmagne Leland St. John

There is a feeling that comes with morning
when farmers feel an inner stirring–
when April’s deluges have subsided and the earth
cries out for the plough, like a lover
long denied her heart’s desire.

He rises in the fragrance of May, with the fields
still fresh with anticipation of seed
and the nutrients of sun and the aroma
of hay in the barn and the tractor chafing
under the tarpaulin that covered it in winter.

Soon the diesel will chuff and snort,
like a big horse before his soaked oats–
slowly, intrepidly the farmer hitches the planter,
pulls his rig out of the barn, down the lane
to the hundred acres he will plant this day.

All of life converges within the season:
the barn, the silo, the pensive sky,
all have their say, in a way of life–
the earth, with its lover’s longings,
a man, riding high on his steed, ready for work.


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