Monday, September 15, 2008

Agriculture


Audio


There was a time when no one knew
How trees and plants and bushes grew.
About ten thousand years ago
Folks figured out that they could sow
These inedible things called seeds
And grow the food to meet their needs.
And for some reason, they chose rather
Break their backs than hunt and gather.
Now they had to work much harder
To fill up the empty larder.
Wanting food as the result,
They formed a sort of agri-cult,
Bowing, scraping, cultivating,
Watching weather, always waiting.
This was quite a drastic change
For folks who used to hunt the range
And eat whatever they could find.
But now they left that life behind
To start up farms and settle down
In what was to become a town.
These farms could help avert starvation
For a growing population.
(For with a stable food supply
Folks could fruitfully multiply.)
But settled life had its rewards,
And looked so good to passing hordes
That all the folks who lived on farms
Were sometimes forced to take up arms
And had to fight to keep their lands
From falling to invaders’ hands.

The hunting life had been quite nice,
But now, expelled from paradise
When ice age glaciers all withdrew
Taking with them the prey we knew,
We had a choice: we could migrate,
Or else just learn to cultivate.
We learned to use the sun and rain
And soil to grow a stock of grain.
Thus started, with this realization
What we call civilization.

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