Land w/o people

Chrissy’s parents were dairy farmers and the family farmed in Wisconsin since their first ancestors arrived from Norway in the 1850s. She can trace her ancestry back in Norway to the 1500s. They were farmers there too at least that far back. It ended in this generation. Farming is hard work and it is easier to make money off the farm. And the economy has changed forever. We can grow more on fewer acres with a lot fewer people.

This is good for general prosperity. Yet we lose a lot when too many of us lose our connection with the land, with productive land. Visiting parks and hiking in the mountains is great. It is great to be IN the natural world, but not the same as being OF the natural world. That requires (IMO at least) a steady and interactive relationship with the land, one that persists for years.

I don’t know how we can achieve or maintain this in our changing world, but I think it is important to try.

As Aldo Leopold wrote, “There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace.”