Song of the North Bay Organic Farmer: A Poem

Jonah Raskin

My bedroom’s in the fields,

my kitchen’s in the ground.

Radishes restore me,

sunflowers fertilize me.

I’m nurtured by the cover crop

I cut down and turn over

in the belly of the earth.

I pollinate and I plow,

yoke barnyard to backyard,

feed the whole town,

talk farmer talk at supper table,

pass bowls of organic chard and

bushels of country charm.

I walk the farmer walk through

valleys of alfalfa and rows of wheat,

gather new potatoes and ripe tomatoes,

pledge allegiance to compost and mulch,

sing a pagan hymn to

fecund flowers and ungainly weeds,

watch the peas climb skyward,

take the seasons a second at a time,

in drought or flood,

wade through waves of spring,

inhale the heat of summer,

wrap autumn’s evening shadows

around my shoulders and wear

the light of the harvest moon

across my wildly beating heart.

Jonah Raskin is the author of ‘Marijuanaland’ and ‘Field Days: A Year of Farming, Eating and Drinking Wine in California,’ and is a frequent contributor to these pages.

We welcome your contribution. To have your topical essay of 350 words considered for publication, write [email protected].

Sonoma County Library