The Field Is Right for Reaping


Victoria Neff recently graduated from college in upstate New York, where she learned to tolerate snow. Now she lives south of the Mason-Dixon line, where she’s readjusting to hundred-degree days. In addition to the weather, she also likes biology, baking, and traveling.


Farming implies early rising:
it is and it isn’t.
(in spring, in summer, or in winter.)

In spring:
dead leaves covered the ground,
the cock’s crow came with dawn,
a period of unfavorable weather set in,
it rained every day for a week.

We spend the evenings as in the old days,
almost dead with fatigue
——–(dead tired)

In summer:
the temperature reaches 90 or 95 degrees in the daytime,
the nights are often chilly.
The breeze served us admirably.

In winter:
if the day was cold,
he filled the stove
and had a warm fire burning before he left the house.

It is nearly half past five;
he climbed wearily to bed.

Poem source: The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. and E.B. White; Title source: The Decemberists, “Oceanside”


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