Independence Day

Yesterday was Independence Day. We celebrated it at the farmers market.

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It was a fine day, and I felt no desire to improve upon it. But had I spent some of it in the woods, I surely would have enjoyed it even more.

Independence Day
by Wendell Berry

Between painting a roof yesterday and the hay
harvest tomorrow, a holiday in the woods
under the grooved trunks and branches, the roof
of leaves lighted and shadowed by the sky.
As American from England, the woods stands free
from politics and anthems. So in the woods I stand
free, knowing my land. My country, tis of the
drying pools along Camp Branch I sing,
where the water striders walk like Christ,
all sons of God, and of the woods grown old
on the stony hill where the thrush’s song rises
in the light like a curling vine and the bobwhite’s
whistle opens in the air, broad and pointed like a leaf.

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21 comments on “Independence Day

  1. Happy belated Independence Day Bill.
    ๐Ÿ™‚ Mandy xo

    Liked by 1 person

  2. DM says:

    love the feeling of that poem!. Thought of you yesterday. We ran to the big city to check out their farmers market…stopped @ a booth run by a young couple selling fresh vegetables. Asked him what time his day started, in order to get there….3 AM..(they lived a couple of hours North, and the market opens @ 7:30.) Seeing all that produce in the picture blows my mind, when I think of all the work that goes into getting to that point. I’m with you..I love the woods. DM

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    • Bill says:

      It’s not quite that bad for us. I get up at 4:30 on market day. Ours also opens at 7:30. We’ve had good production so far this year. That photo only shows part of what we had available. It’s definitely a good time of year for eating. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Wendell Berry just always puts the right perspective on everything. I’m always glad when you post his writings. The woods are free from politics and anthems — yes.

    Like

    • Bill says:

      Thanks. I’m really glad you enjoyed it, and glad you appreciate my frequent Wendell Berry posts. This poem gives me goosebumps. “So in the woods I stand free, knowing my land.”

      Like

  4. nebraskadave says:

    8:03 AM 7/5/2015
    Bill, Independence day should be a day of reflection on the sacrifices our founders gave to us willingly and without regret but it’s turned into a commercial circus here in my city. Thank goodness there’s only a 10 day window for selling fireworks but during that time fireworks tents pop up like mushrooms all across the city. Thousands of dollars probably millions are spent on things that blow up and cause the sky to light up. I seriously doubt that any of those folks are thinking about what the celebration is for. It’s sad for me to see how holidays have become all about spending money.

    I started the day (5am) at Terra Nova Gardens weeding and planning my strategy to save the sweet corn this year. My neighbor across the street from where I live has a garden at Terra Nova Gardens as well and he was at the garden as well (7:30am). One of the surrounding suburbs has a two hour parade with all the politicians from the Governor down to the register of deeds were there along with businesses, school marching bands, fire trucks, rescue squads, classic cars, motor cycles, Shriners, and the list goes on and on. That’s always a must see since a good friend lives on the parade route. After that burgers on the grill and sweet corn in the pot enhanced by potato salad and all the other BBQ trimmings. I returned home at 8pm and endured the explosions and the smell of fireworks wafting through the air until about 1:30am.

    I did learn some history yesterday in my media reading. Thomas Jefferson died on the 4th of July 50 years after drafting the Declaration of Independence. John Adams died on the same day as Thomas Jefferson.

    Have a great day in the best country on the planet even through she has some major problems.

    Like

    • Bill says:

      Sounds like you had a good day Dave, even though you had to put up with all the explosions. We saw some fireworks going off in the distance, but they were so far away we could only see them burst, we couldn’t hear the sound.

      As I recall the story Mr. Adams’ last words were “Jefferson still lives,” and Mr. Jefferson’s were “Is it the fourth yet?” Remarkable men.

      Liked by 1 person

      • nebraskadave says:

        Yes, you are correct with the last words. They were indeed remarkable men. Oh, if we could only have statesmen like the early founders once again.

        Like

  5. avwalters says:

    “Thrush’s” ?

    Like

  6. Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

    How I would love to be right there in Wendell Berry’s wood;
    It sounds a truly wondrous place (an’ do a body good: )

    Like

  7. Seeking Joyful Simplicity says:

    What a great way to spend the holiday, selling the wholesome food from your land. Land, food, people, country…it’s all connected isn’t it?
    I wish Wendell was required reading in high schools.

    One question Bill- what’s your favorite part of selling at the market?

    Like

    • Bill says:

      By far my favorite part is enjoying the company of the community. There is a nice friendly camaraderie among the vendors, who are a great group of folks. And I really enjoy conversations with our regular customers, who share our values and are excited about what we do. Plus I enjoy meeting new people and talking about food. I’m an introvert so it would have surprised me a few years ago to know I’d feel this way. One of the reasons we started with a CSA was because I didn’t want to go to the farmers market. But now I actually look forward to it.

      Like

      • Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

        Hmm, an “introverted Lawyer”… Isn’t that a bit of an oxymoron?; )

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      • Bill says:

        Not really. There are plenty of lawyer/introverts. Many are tax lawyers and things like that. But even trial lawyers like me can be perfectly comfortable arguing a case to a judge or jury, and terribly uncomfortable talking to a stranger at a cocktail party.

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      • Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

        Hm (well in that case; ) really glad to see that you’re pushing your limits by sharing your knowledge and passion for change: )

        Like

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