My mother’s father grew up in a farming family. Not one that farmed for much money, but one that raised hogs and grew gardens on rented land. After my grandfather was grown, his parents bought a 100-acre farm and built their house with their hands. Just before I was born, my great-grandfather was crushed by his tractor on a steep hillside.
Years later my great-grandmother sold the farm to divide the inheritance money between her two children. I don’t think my granddad ever fully recovered from losing his dream of farming that land. A decade ago he and my grandmother bought thirty mostly wooded acres, where he grew a large garden in the late evenings after work and on the weekends. This spring, after years of dreams and long commutes, my grandparents finally moved out to their farm.
My grandfather doesn’t speak much, instead humming and rubbing his hands together, but when asked why he plants a garden every year despite limited time and old age, he replied, “I try to stop, but every spring the soil sings to me.” Continue Reading →