Here At the End

My time here at the farm, even in the mid-season heat and hurry, has felt like both the end of something and the beginning of something. Coming here at all, committing to this season of education and challenge, was its own kind of end. It was the culmination of many years of feeling my way towards a tangible connection to Earth and purpose, and service. And even as the relief of having reached such a climactic moment settles in, I have the solid and abiding sensation that things are only just beginning. Watching the cover crop starting to stand more upright, getting attuned to its winter responsibility as soil-guardian, I’m inspired to act accordingly at this place of newness-at-the-end.

I’ll speak for myself and say that this blog has presented me a joyous opportunity to write with the knowledge that what’s written will be read by others, and I’ve cherished the foray for its own challenges and rewards. But when autumn comes around as truly as its doing now, I feel compelled to listen more than speak, so I don’t think I have much more to say. Other than, thank you all, for supporting this season’s experience. And, I’d like to share one of Joy Harjo’s poems, which I’ve read over and again, which cuts so sharply through all that is happening now in the world, and which articulates the cosmic placement of that particular kind of hope I’ve felt because of this farm.

“Perhaps the World Ends Here” by Joy Harjo

The world begins at a kitchen table. No matter what, we must eat to live.

The gifts of earth are brought and prepared, set on the table. So it has been since creation, and it will go on.

We chase chickens or dogs away from it. Babies teethe at the corners. They scrape their knees under it.

It is here that children are given instructions on what it means to be human. We make men at it, we make women.

At this table we gossip, recall enemies and the ghosts of lovers.

Our dreams drink coffee with us as they put their arms around our children. They laugh with us at our poor falling-down selves and as we put ourselves back together once again at the table.

This table has been a house in the rain, an umbrella in the sun.

Wars have begun and ended at this table. It is a place to hide in the shadow of terror. A place to celebrate the terrible victory.

We have given birth on this table, and have prepared our parents for burial here.

At this table we sing with joy, with sorrow. We pray of suffering and remorse. We give thanks.

Perhaps the world will end at the kitchen table, while we are laughing and crying, eating of the last sweet bite.

 

Wholeheartedly,

Matthew

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