The romance addict in me visualizes hunky cowboys as the men who won the west, but the stalwart farmers tamed a good portion of it too. And many of them are just as darn hot and ripped.
So this is dedicated to the men (and women) who raise the food we put on our table as they battle the weather, government mandates, the interest rates on their farm equipment loans, the fickle stock market that often dictates the price of a barrel of wheat, and factory farm take-overs.
The Berthoud Historical Society recently hosted a house tour and tractor parade. Perhaps because I grew up in Moline, Illinois, the home of John Deere, and we had an International Harvester refrigerator in our kitchen and a plow on our high school class ring, I have a fondness for tractors.
The antique ones were fascinating, and obviously cared for lovingly.
This one was a military road-grater used by the Army Airborne Division to make landing strips in WWII.
Here is the forerunner of the modern day thrashing machine
They were washed and polished, and made wonderful growly noises as they passed by.
Kenny Chesney put it like this.....
Over by the gate, yonder here she comes
With a basket full of chicken
And a big cold jug of sweet tea
I make a little room and she climbs on up
I open up the throttle and stir a little dust
Look at her face, she ain't a foolin' me
She ain't into cars or pick-up trucks
But if it runs like a deer, man her eyes light up
She thinks my tractor's sexy
It really turns her on
She's always starin' at me
While I'm chuggin' along
She likes the way it's pulling
While it's tillin' up the land
She's even kinda crazy about my farmers tan
She's the only one who really
Understands what gets me
She thinks my tractor's sexy
I can picture any one of these guys singing that song to me!
Nothin' like fresh veggies........
I'd love to help you unload that hay......
You don't sing? No problem......
Ode to The Agrarian Warrior
by Gini Rifkin
Foggy morning, up before the sun. The tractor awaits, a familiar old friend. The engine grumbles as it barters for a few more moments rest then growls into life. And so begins the day for the solitary man as he reflects upon the complexities of the world, or simply marvels at the beauty of the magpie perched upon the nearest fence post.
A field of wheat, a grain of truth. Like gulls behind a mighty ship at sea, hungry hawks follow in the wake of his wheeled vessel. Is the warrior at the helm an apple-cheeked youth full of wonder and hope for the future? Or does a wise more mature countenance peer through the morning mist? One who carries proud memories of a life well lived. Perhaps the heart of a female, reminiscent of Joan de Arc, beats beneath the flannel and denim hauberk.
You are the Green Knight fighting glorious battles against misguided civilization. Fending off developers who covet your water and land. You are a Galahad trying to appease Nature--your fickle handmaiden. Mother Earth your friend can deliver a gentle rain or a cooling breeze. Mother Earth your spurned lover can flood the land with tears or burn your crops with unrelenting heat as she conspires in anger with the blazing sun.
As the days grow shorter the fields will slumber. Winter approaches bearing the promise of quiet nights by the warm fire. Rest easy, there is hay in the mow and the wood is cut and at the ready. But the demands of the warrior know not the season. And though you are weary there are cattle and other livestock to be fed, some stranded in fields drifted high with snow, your efforts will be their only salvation. And there are family and friends to see to, even strangers up the road who need your help.
Yet do not despair Spring will find us again, and as you measure your kingdom in acres not realms, sleep well tonight. You are one with the land, an achievement not realized by many, a brotherhood formed by the few and the stalwart. You are the Agrarian Warrior.
If I don't see you in the future,
I'll see you in the pasture.