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Friday, September 9, 2011

Hay Crew

Another summer's season, and yet another hot
Wind drives the rolling fescue, fully grown,
A grassy sea of billows to be mown.
It glistens glassy-green, chest high with sunshine shot.

Men anxiously consult weather, market price, 
And wait.  Dawn comes and brings a sound:
Equipment fells the stalks by millions to the ground-
The combines from their necks the seed-heads slice.
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Days pass and jokes are made, as hay is made.  Too-late rain,
Which would not come for months when needed, comes
When its a nuisance-worse.  But still hay-harvest hums.
Raked rows along the hard, smooth curves of earth are lain

Long and drying sunward first.  The balers (round or square,
According need and preference) move. The smell
Of human sweat and hot fresh hay they do not sell.
It is a Jacob's birthright to those who breathe the air.

Along the sticky blacktop, trucks crawl piled high,
With newborn bales and teenage boys atop
Pleased to work their muscles, but glad to stop,
With sunburned faces raised to burnished sky.



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