Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Last weekend I was asked why I bother to write “those stories.”
“What’s the point of it all? You don’t get paid for it! Who reads that kind of thing?”
Tanya was referring to the series of “Families who Farm” articles I write as a volunteer for www.theloveoffood.ca
I’ve been thinking a lot about Tanya’s questions, so I thought I’d respond in an open letter.
Imagine having the opportunity to visit with families on their farms, to walk their fields hand-in-hand with their children, smell their crops, greet their animals, and then sit in their kitchens and listen to their personal stories of a love, struggle and farm life. Imagine sharing these intimate stories in a public forum with the knowledge that small things can make a huge difference.
And imagine getting emails like the one I received this week from Elaine Edel in Manitoba who has been farming for almost 50 years. “I went to the website and luckily I was alone; the tears came. Thanks so much for your words. I appreciate what you are doing for rural simple people like us.”
Words are powerful tools and at times, in my relationships and written work, I haven’t always found the right ones. I have been given the gift of working with author, photographer Carl Hiebert www.giftofwings.ca whose work honours rural communities. And as a writer, I am inspired to share “those stories” and when I do, I seem to find just the right words.
Tanya, I am an optimist, who as author, activist Michael Pollan says, “Have had the good fortune to see how my articles have directly benefited some farmers.”
I salute families who farm.
Cheers! Deb Cripps