Nothing tastes better than fruits or veggies warm from the sun, soft and ripe out of the garden of a morning–the transfusion immediate from Earth to Man. Pluck and eat, the cycle complete.

I feel the same way about a certain kind of photo-moment, and just had one of them. Not only that, but had the opportunity to confess this “fresh-eaten images” feeling with someone the other day over coffee. Amazingly, he seemed to understand.

So HM, this morsel is for you, not a half hour old as the sun rises over our un-mowed pasture–not so good for hay but wonderful for spider web pix.

Which reminds me of a little piece from Slow Road Home, and I’ll take the liberty to plegarize from the author as I’m certain he would approve:

I’ve been asked more than once what it might be we plan to do with ‘all this land’. The question is often asked by those who think, because we are ‘from off’ that we might not know how to use land wisely.

I have an idea of the answers that they expect. I could tell them that someday we will fence it off to keep a few head of cattle; or I could say that we were going to  plant Christmas trees like so many other landowners in the county who can’t make their land pay for itself by farming alone.

The truth of the matter I’m not certain yet what we might do with this bit of pasture. But I believe that, until we decide, when they ask I will tell them this: I plan to use this bottomland for taking spider web pictures.

Share this with your friends!

Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. Hello Fred. Thank you for your help months ago when I was looking for info on Floyd. We aren’t moving to your area after all, heading instead to the heartland of the beast – Indiana. The decision is made after weeks of uncertainty and now the wheels are in motion.

    I just wanted to say that we too hope to buy some land there, and while we are sure to put in a moderate garden just a shade too large to keep up with the weeding, we hope to have it just to conserve, to wander about and get lost in, to leave unimproved for the migrant birds to rest in, and to rest my weary eyes against when they can’t focus on the computer screen anymore.

    And perhaps I will even take a spider web picture for you someday.