fourteen hours in a John Deere tractor.
Bumping along the rows,
followed by a bulky brown cart.
Drinking coffee on the way to the field,
plotting the demise of the circle of stalks.
Silver combine chews up stalks,
churning out leaves and cobs, sheltering golden corn.
A wide swath torn from the field;
the bright green tractor
labors with the fully loaded cart,
heaving it through the harvested rows.
Fair-haired leaves line the rows,
stripped from their once tall stalks.
The brown cart
cares only for the rich, yellow corn;
crushing the leaves, it rolls behind the tractor.
Rabbits flee the destruction in the field.
The sun moves higher as we work the field,
throttling, rotating, surging past the rows.
The world shrinks, becoming the tractor,
as tall graceful stalks
yield their treasure, and the corn
calls out to the empty cart.
Hungry semi’s wait for the cart
in a line at the end of the field.
Craving, longing, yearning for corn,
unmoved by the bleak and bitter rows.
The wind teases the remaining stalks,
swaying and bending when passed by the tractor.
Darkness approaches, stop and fuel the tractor,
its’ shadow swallows the cart.
Tripping over the shorn stalks,
time has come to leave the field.
Wraithlike sit the empty rows,
eerily weeping for their corn.
Another field, unsuspecting, will host the big, green tractor,
hauling the cart through the rows
yielding the stalks for the looting of the corn.