I noticed the birdsong as I stepped out the door on Saturday morning, the joyous and varied cries of greeting for the sun on a glorious spring day.  Mourning doves called to each other from the branches of the oaks. Two competed in song, and then a third flew in to join one of them. The first flew on, and the pair took flight as well.  I reveled in the joy of the moment, hearing my favorite bird sing “sweet sweet sweet” to which I responded “it sure is bud”.

        Nature sings her symphony in the soughing of the wind through the trees, the humming of the insects and the song of the birds.   Woodpeckers, blue jays, nuthatches, ravens, doves, redwing blackbirds and many others make themselves heard in chorus and cacophony.  The scent of narcissus and daphne is in the air, creating a giddiness in the heart.

       Carving out time on the farm is not easy these days, but when it happens there is such a simple joy in being able to be home and tending the land.  The work is physically difficult, but it is welcome. I am spending so much time these days on food systems and policy work that I don’t get to spend as much time as I would like with my hands in the dirt.  

        Sometimes we are called to do that which we may not have expected, and all anyone can do is roll with it.  In seeking to serve a broad life goal of beneficial social change, I have found my way to working on food systems and regulatory policy for cannabis and agricultural production.  I am glad for those with whom I share the journey, as we engage in the various forms of community to which we are called.

       It is a joy to be at the farmers market with food harvested from our farm.  It is a joy to help farmers sell food and to help see to it that good food makes it into the hands of people who want to eat it.  I am glad to the opportunity to work hard, to pour heart and soul into efforts that feel good.

       Life unfolds as the years pass by, one step at a time in the blink of an eye.  We do the best we can with the circumstances we are given, and that adds up to human society.  To paraphrase the old Winston Churchill quote, the system we have today is the worst possible one, except for every other one we’ve already tried.  

       As I sat writing and listening to music, the rays of the setting sun broke through the clouds with a deep red glow that lit up the room just as a beautiful instrumental kicked into higher gear with a horn section.  As I stepped out onto the deck, the aching beauty of the moment shattered me as the music swam in my soul. The essence of perfection, a tantalizing glimpse of the universe of love, the universal love.

      And as I beheld this breathtaking moment in time, I heard Amber say “uhoh, I see a chicken out.”  Sure enough, a dozen of the young chickens had escaped from their brooder and were scattered about in the yard and the barn where the feed is kept.  We hurried to corral them and get them back inside in the gathering dusk.

       The duality of this moment epitomizes farming; equal parts thunderstruck-by-love and OH SHIT.  As I sit back down to write, I am grateful for both, the juxtaposition of which keeps us on our toes and enthralled with the journey.  I am glad for the opportunity to work the soil and tend the land. I am glad for the opportunity to strive towards a better future, and to engage to the best of my abilities in the tasks and callings with which I am presented.  Much love and great success to you!