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Farming

  • We shall have constantly recurring 'panics' and 'crashes' and 'hard times' until our people learn that the tilling of the soil is the true source of wealth; that golden corn above the ground is really of more value to the country than the gold in the earth; that the soil of our country has abundance for all her children; it is a mother who never for bread offers a stone.

  • Farming isn't what it was, and when I come to think on, it never has been.

  • On the farm the weather was the great fact, and men's affairs went on underneath it, as the streams creep under the ice.

  • A farmer's got to be born, same as a fool. You can't make a corn pone out of flour dough by the twistin' of it.

  • There's no beginning to the farmer's year, / Only recurrent patterns on a scroll / Unwinding ...

  • The life of the earth comes up with a rush in the springtime. All the wild seeds of weed and thistle, the sprouts of vine and bush and tree, are trying to take the fields. Farmers must fight them with harrow and plow and hoe; they must plant the good seeds quickly.

  • The only difference between a pigeon and a farmer today is a pigeon can still make a deposit on a John Deere tractor.

  • For all-around, everyday, all-season wear, farmers can't be beat. They are inclined to chafe under the burden of leisure (a minor vexation on the farm), but they thrive on neglect and adversity.

  • ... invest everything in chickens and pretty soon you're thinking like a chicken. You know how chickens think? I do, because I raised chickens as a boy. Chickens are always looking for little bits of things in the dirt. They don't conceptualize on a higher plane. You step back from chickens and you start conceptualizing on a higher plane. That's my philosophy.

  • How will you know a good farmer when you meet him? He will not ask you for any favors.

  • ... much agricultural land which might be growing food is being used instead to 'grow' money (in the form of coffee, tea, etc.).

  • ... in a world where only a minor portion of the land is really well suited to agriculture, man is using much of the best land with dubious efficiency.

  • You have stirred the soil with your plow, my friend. It will never be the same again.

  • ... once a man had thrust his hands into the soil and knew the grit of it between his teeth, he felt something rise within him that was not of his day or generation, but had persisted through birth and death from a time beyond recall.

  • A farm is like a very large and extended baby. It takes a great deal of time and very little mentality.

  • A farmer is dependent on too many things outside his control; it makes for modesty.

  • She often wondered if city dwellers knew what the sight of a seed catalogue did for country people. It was a gift sent from the seed houses — and the Lord — to make bearable the month of February.

  • [On farming:] It's a pleasanter way of losing money than most.

  • The only thing dumber than a turkey is a person who thinks it would be fun to raise turkeys. ... Turkeys seem to have only one built-in response to any stimulus, panic.

  • Production and reproduction is the rural theme that marks the time and synchronizes everything on a farm.

  • It is a rule of nature that taking a day off on a farm sets a person back at least a week.

  • Of course there are plenty of woman who could not be successful farmers, just as there are plenty of men.

  • Farmers are born, not made.

  • Why is it that farmworkers feed the nation but they can't get food stamps?

  • Every single day we sit down to eat, breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and at our table we have food that was planted, picked, or harvested by a farm worker. Why is it that the people who do the most sacred work in our nation are the most oppressed, the most exploited?