Sunday, October 26, 2008

In Praise of Farms

Yesterday, I took my niece and nephew to the Gentry farm, in Franklin Tennessee, to fetch a pumpkin or two, (we bought four) walk the corn maze, and take a hay ride. The farm, in America, is a vanishing way of life. The Gentry family knows this all too well, as on every side of them, development encroaches. This is not an anti-development post, but, as the title suggests, a doxology to the farm.

If you've got food on your table, (which if you are able to read this post on a computer, you do) thank a farmer. Thank generations of them.

The man who drove the tractor that pulled a yuppie crowd of suburbanites through the Gentry property gave us some facts about farm life that were all but lost on the consumerists we all know ourselves to be. The Gentrys know it too- we paid $6.00 to get in the farm to wander, to play to buy. He told us all the homes on the property were built from material harvested from the land itself except for the glass in the windows. How many of us can say the land on which we live sustains our existence? Does the phrase Got milk indicate to you that it probably meant something entirely different to farmers just fifty years ago?

We had a great time, my niece, nephew and me. As we drove off the property, over the flattened grass, and onto the highway, we passed a sign erected for this, and all seasons; it read: Praise God from whom all blessings flow. It resounds and makes me thankful there are farmers who know to whom their praise is due.

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