17 September 2013

a little wheat-love for you

After a handful of years that saw my field primarily taken up by the seedy, tangly, oily canola crops that yield me no joy, this year the farmer finally planted wheat. You have no idea how much this improved my quality of life over the summer. 

I love wheat.

I am brimmed with fond memories from my childhood when I would play in it for hours; chasing butterflies, nesting in little flattened coves, inventing games or simply running through it for the sake of running. All those glorious hours spent thinking and adventuring really connected me to it. I suppose, somewhere along the line, I directly connected a wheat field with happiness.

So then there was today. Being very windy while still comfortably sunny, I decided to go for a proper play before my schedule really fills up (it's already three quarters there) and the wheat is ripe enough to be harvested. The latter should be any day now.

Wearing a shirt I stole from the boy I love, and flanked by my dogs, I scampered into the wheat like my inner twelve-year-old demanded. I ran and ran and tripped and my TOMS filled with fallen grains. The wind blew my hair into my face. Ivy almost got lost in the height of the stalks, but hopped her way towards my voice. I sang a little. I breathed in the grassy, bready, earthy wheat-smell. I watched a distraught butterfly swirl around in the wind and get caught in a tangle of stalks. I bounded along with the doggies.

Eventually, I made myself a nest. I laid down and the dogs laid with me. I cuddled them and got wheat-heads and doggy tangled into my hair. I stared into the perfectly blue sky. I smiled. I thought about the simplicity of real happiness. I thought about the things that make wheat beautiful.

 I love the way it holds onto rain after a storm.
I love how dragonflies cling to the heads while they await their prey.
I love the rustling sound it makes when the wind blows it about.
I love the slow process from damp fresh green to tindery pale gold.
I love ducking into it and feeling hidden away from the rest of the world.
I love how it moves like the ocean on a windy day.
I love the way the heads slowly curl over like an old man’s spine as they ripen.
I love flattening out a little nest-cove for star-gazing or napping or cuddling.
I love running through it until I trip (it always catches my fall).
I love telling people that my legs are scratched up because I’ve been running through it.
I love the way it tickles my palms when I drag my hands across it like Maximus in Gladiator.
I love it when my dogs run through it and have to jump three feet to see above the stalks.
I love how it gets tangled into my hair when I lay in it.
I love finding frogs in it.
I love chewing on the grains until they turn into a doughy substance in my mouth. 

I love jumping over the haybales once it’s all been harvested.

I couldn't resist going home to fetch my camera in order to document my wheat-love, just for you. Whether or not you too have a wheat field at the back of your house, or have known the pleasure of experiencing one, I hope this made you love wheat a little. It's a lovely thing to love.