The pretty sound of meadowlarks singing has led several people in the past to write to “Neighbors” about their enjoyment of it. They’ve even written poetry about it.
Today, on the first day of spring 2021, here’s another such composition.
It comes from Dennis “Mac” McMahon, Canon City, Colo., who writes, “I wrote this a few years back during a moment of reflection, recalling the sound of those meadowlarks, which I heard nearly constantly in the summer of my world back then.
“I grew up in Alice, N.D., (in western Cass County), in the 1950s.”
“Song of the Lark”
I feel as though I’m swimming
In a green and glaucous sea.
As a wind that’s nearly nonexistent
Swirls the grass around my knees.
The crystal shard of a lark in song,
Slices through the almost silence
Of a sky so wide I nearly have to catch my breath.
And if I could
Somehow see his song,
That song would be a cataract of light
in my private dark.
Am I being selfish?
Sharing not this place,
This moment locked in time?
We’re the only ones alive, you see;
My meadowlark and I,
And I know that he is singing
just for me.
Still feeling it
Mac wrote that even as he was typing this out for “Neighbors,” “I can actually hear the meadowlark singing, and I can feel the grass brushing up against my knees.”
And now he tells something of his North Dakota background.
“My folks owned the Fairway Store, the local grocery in Alice,” he writes.
“I’m old enough to remember as a very small boy witnessing the tail end of the steam threshers in actual use.
“My great-grandmother lived in an old Victorian house across from the Catholic church. The house has been gone 40 years or more. But I remember in the foyer there was a small round leaded stained glass window of yellow tulips and greenery. In the afternoons, the sun coming through that window was magical.
“Against the opposite wall was one of those mahogany hall tables so common in homes of that vintage upon which an imitation fern rested. Above the fern was a picture of a harvest scene. It was of my grandfather and his brothers’ threshing crew circa 1910.
“The picture was typical of the era, similar in nature to many I’ve seen of large gatherings. It was probably 30 inches wide and perhaps 10 to 12 inches high, showing the whole threshing operation in one shot.
“On those afternoons when the sun was shining through the stained glass, that picture seemed to come alive. Which inspired this writing to you.”
If you have an item of interest for this column, mail it to Neighbors, The Forum, Box 2020, Fargo, ND 58107, fax it to 701-241-5487 or email email@example.com.