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Posts Tagged ‘cornfield county’

     Did I say thank you, Willa Mae? Mind if I keep your copy of the ‘almanac’ a while longer? I haven’t had a chance to get entirely through it, but so far I love the planting tips, and humorous quips. You’re a little country blessing, most of the time. You work hard for the money down at the farmers’ grain terminal, too, and you’re always in the know ‘cause you keep your ears open. It must be a good trait because it says here in the latest edition, “who has ears to hear, let him hear”. Ha!! We always say that in jest here in cornfield county, but it’s like a sunrise chanticleer cock-a-doodle-doo when you read it. Reminds you to wake up and pay attention because you might learn somethin’. You know, keeps ya’ from being a dumb cluck.

     Well for a while there we thought rambling Jimmy Dean Murdoch fit that stereotype. Acts and looks like he was raised in a barn sometimes, but by meditated purpose or by second nature he seems to have mastered a form of good ol’ boy dissimulation and hustle that disguises his true reasoning and intellect. Some say he can gibber a squirrel out of its nuts. Even back when we were strong striplings, Jimmy, in a brotherly way, would volunteer me and himself for field duties because he knew I wasn’t afraid of work. Looking back, it was often a long hot day in the hay loft with my partner-by-default ‘cause his motor tended to overheat and be in idle a lot.

     The boy’s well is drilled a little bit deeper than you might think though. I was sloppin’ hogs down on Bear Creek the last full moon when Jimmy stopped by to just ruminate before the morning glories opened up. Funny how I got that old feeling that I was about to be involuntarily enlisted for service, but it seemed to be no more than neighborly notions, superficially.

     Well, Jimmy Dean must have had one too many sausages for breakfast that day ‘cause he was of a mind to chew the fat. I wasn’t paying a whole lot of attention, however, for fear a boar would get me down ‘til he raised his voice and startled me as I heard him say, “Jesus!” (Jimmy’s a regular at the old Berea Church on the hill there just off Route D, south of Kingdom City.) “Did you ever think at all, John, about that grain seed we put in the ground every year? Unless it’s buried, dead to the world, it ain’t never any more than just one lonely little seed. But if it dies, ya’ know gets buried by the planter, it sprouts and reproduces itself many times over yielding us a rich harvest. It is changed right there in the ground, I don’t know how, and becomes the root of a plant producing many more seeds!”

     About now I was beginning to look to see if J.D. was chawin’ on Jimson weed but, heaven knows, he was making some peculiar sense out of a mundane matter. Hmmm…through a latent kernel’s sacrifice, many others come to life. Well slap my knee. It is kind of dumbfounding how giving up life can actually preserve it. The thought occurred to me that, in the same way, if a person died to himself sometimes, he might be of benefit to a whole lot more folks as well.   

     Seeing that my mind was grinding into a higher gear, and the sun was gettin’ up, Jimmy pulled his brim down and started to mosey back towards his 4 x 4. He paused, turned and said, “Geez, I almost forgot! The FFA needs some equipment unloaded down at the fairgrounds this weekend.  I told ‘em you and I would help out…if you ain’t doing nothin’. Seems like they can always count on us. It’ll surely be a blessing, too.”

     Somehow I felt like my seed had just been involuntarily buried, again. That was the longest way around the barn Jimmy Dean! I’m telling you, there’s a lot more to that good-hearted boy than meets the eye.

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