Marshall’s sorrow is the same as human
sorrow generally, but there is this
difference. To live in a doomed city, a doomed
nation, a doomed world is desolating, and we all
are desolate. But to live on a doomed farm
is worse. It must be worse. There the exact
point of connection, gate of conversion, is –
mind and life. The hilltop farms are going.
Bottomland farms, mechanized, are all that survive.
As more and more developers take over
northern Vermont, values of land increase,
taxes increase, farming is an obsolete vocation –
while half the world goes hungry. Marshall walks
his fields and woods, knowing every useful thing
about them, and knowing his knowledge is useless.
from Hayden Carruth’s poem Marshall Washer. It’s a good one. You can read the rest of it in this book.