"We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to return to the place we started and know it for the first time."
T. S. Eliot is not in any sense an agricultural or rural writer, but this sentence of his has always seemed an apt description of a farming life. We live our lives, we who love farming, as a kind of continuous experiment with new procedures, new products, new machines, only to discover as we age that we forgot to start by asking our farm what it could produce well, without reduction to itself or to us. With age may come the patience to listen to what the land wants to do. A long, busy, mistake filled life finally comes to the chance for wisdom, if we can but recognize it.