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Showing posts from February, 2010

Wendell and Ken

I am a farmer, and I fear that my words will sound rustic and plain when I try to speak about our world situation. It is complex, experts say, and dangerous too, no fit subject for a tiller of the soil. And yet I have watched things grow, bear fruit and die under many circumstances and have come to believe that the health of my little garden and the health of this world bear a relationship stronger than analogical. - Ken King, found writing Wendell Berry and Ken King never met; it's uncertain if Ken even read any of Berry's writing. Yet both men, deep thinkers and lifelong "tillers of the soil," drew a resonant guidance from living and working in tune with nature's cycles. Berry published many thoughtful volumes of poetry and essays; Ken has left us provocative snippets. Each man, in his own way, expresses a wisdom inextricably tied to the "simple" act of working the land, and succeeding when working with nature. Berry's concern, in his essay, Life

Looking back, looking forward

Ken King, founder of Frog Holler Farm, passed away last year. A deeply thoughtful man, Ken left essays, fragments, poems behind - most unpublished - and many inspirational. Here is the introduction to what was apparently the start of a book. As Cathy and Ken & Cathy's sons - Billy, Kenny and Edwin - contemplate this new season without Ken's physical presence, these words provide a reminder of the basic ideals that always informed Ken's vision and actions; they also provide guidance for the choices that lie ahead. Untitled, by Ken King It is the last day of 2003. The seed catalogs have arrived, and tomorrow morning I will begin to look them over. As the process begins of contemplating the upcoming gardening year, the basic question always arises: Apart from the relative successes and failures of past years - good crops, poor crops, good or bad soil management, right or wrong seed selections, smart or not-so-smart marketing of plants and produce - apart from the pur