Thursday, March 15, 2012

Billboards and Cement!

Clear your mind of can’t.
   Samuel Johnson

 There once was a beautiful large barn, built beside a little house, on a farm not far from a little town. This farm was prosperous and the family worked and struggled to keep this farm they loved. They were surrounded by many smaller farms where families like themselves struggled to live and survive.

The farms provided the towns folk with the produce they needed to survive, and the town in turn provided the services and goods they needed to farm. It was a very good arrangement. The town’s folk and the farm folk would get together and socialize bringing everyone together in a common goal, happiness and survival.

As the years went on these farmers started to age, and the times were not as prosperous as they used to be. They struggled to survive. The farmers sold their small farms and moved into the little town. The town started to grow, and grow so the town now being quite prosperous but crowded, started buying up all this farmland to accommodate the influx of these same farmers, and their families. Other people from far and wide while visiting would see how beautiful, and prosperous this little town was and they started moving in; the town just kept growing, and growing.

The farmer with the beautiful large barn stuck it out, no matter how hard it became he always knew he would make it through. This farmer and his family watched as the beautiful farmland that used to surround them was soon covered in cement sidewalks, parking lots, and huge buildings. They watched as billboards that were advertising these businesses dotted the landscape all around.
This farmer held on, he and his family knew the true value of this farm and land, and it was not about the money.

Today, I stand here under one of those huge billboards on this cemented over farmland and watch the cows march into this huge barn, they walk into this barn twice a day to be milked. They came from grazing under one of those huge billboards in the middle of the farmland. They do not notice they are surrounded by huge cement buildings built on beautiful farmland, they only know they are going into this huge barn to be milked by the same family that has milked there for generations and cares for them no matter what.

I watch as the crowds of people come out of those huge cement buildings with their carts full of milk, meat, eggs, and other goods brought to this store from companies far away. I wonder if they know just how long, and hard this farmer and his family had worked to survive here to produce milk and other goods that will be shipped far away.

 I truly do admire that original old farmer who had such a clear vision.



  1. wonderful story as always.. thank you!

  2. Great story and, sadly, true. I see family farms being sold or lost every day.

    Who will feed the people when they are gone?

  3. A lot of little kids nowadays have no idea where milk comes from. Very sad, I think.

  4. it pains me to see 'progress' encroach on the older ways and farmland. when i drive thru our former area, it is so built up - even around our little country neighborhood - lovely acreage right up against massive homes and subdivisions... sigh.

  5. I know some of the farms in the Durham region where my family lives. A cousin, who IS one of these farmers, is in a panic about losing their farm due to the humongous tax increase. The cousin is also feeling anxious about the high power hydro lines passing over his best pasture, and the 407 extension that is going RIGHT BY the head of his lane. They are surrounded by rows of identical houses, completely boxing in their farm. This family farm has just been passed to the fifth generation. The fourth generation didn't feel strong enough to fight for it anymore.

  6. it's really difficult to see. my in-laws own a lovely old farmhouse & barn, where mom was raised, that is now right in the center of town. meanwhile, her brother, who lives a few miles out (and still uses horses to plow!) is getting half his land taken from him because they are about to widen the road from one town to the next. i don't know how any small self-sustaining family can make it anymore. it's just so sad.

  7. I've seen some artwork that depicts this so well...and for the life I me I can't remember the artist's name! One of my "favorite" (?) pictures that he drew was of a farm, totally surrounded by a city. I think his last name was Johnson...I'll try to find it. I think you would appreciate his work!

  8. There is something SO wrong with the picture of farmers always struggling. People who provide food, and people who teach children should not be the last ones to get a decent paycheck.

    It always makes me sad to see beautiful fertile fields being paved over.

  9. it really is so sad...great read!

  10. I see that in our town of Spearfish. There is a little barn with a little pasture, surrounded by big fancy houses. Still the owner holds tough. Gotta love tough.

  11. Lovely story. Tar & Cement took over...take care my friend xxx M

  12. Im so happy when generations take over a farm or ranch - thats the right way to keep it in the family, and keep it alive..


The mind grows by what it feeds on. J.G. Holland

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