Aesthetically Invasive (50)

//Aesthetically Invasive (50)

Aesthetically Invasive (50)

I see you, western New York,
Finger lakes wolf-clawed
Across the map, sleeting sheets
Of snow peppering the salted

Highway. Two hundred and fifty six
Miles of abandoned tractors,
Silos filled with hollow sky,
Green verge of fencerow

And shaggy headed reeds,
Aesthetically invasive, nodding
“Yes, yes” where Wegman’s
Parking lot meets the marsh.

This is precisely the same
Everywhere, what we all know
Without seeing, a single emerald
Cover crop at the clover leaf

Just outside Rochester. We rise,
Merging, above the stone-
Picked fields, where black-hatted
Mennonites have returned, swept

Here on the same wind that
Stirred the lake schooners,
The bankers and businessmen,
The moldering barons of Buffalo.

By | 2020-02-03T21:41:05-05:00 February 3rd, 2020|Farm|2 Comments

About the Author:

Forrest Pritchard is a full-time sustainable farmer and New York Times bestselling author, holding a BA in English and a BS in Geology from William & Mary. Smith Meadows, his farm, was one of the first “grass finished” operations in the country, and has sold at leading farmers’ markets in the Washington DC area for two decades. Pritchard's books have received starred reviews from The Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, NPR, and more.


  1. Eliot Brenner February 4, 2020 at 8:46 am - Reply

    Very nice.

  2. Chris Thompson February 4, 2020 at 12:28 pm - Reply

    A picture painted.

    The reeds’ “Yes” is enigmatic. Would have been easy for them to say “No” to the encroachment; but they are apparently encroachers, too. I’m thinking of the tall imported reeds crowding out native cattails in marshy spots all over the East. In the Long Island of my youth, we called cattails “punks.” Dried, they could be set afire like tiki torches.

    Your images linger.

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