I’m reading The Invention of Nature, Alexander Humboldt’s New World, by Andrea Wulf. And I’m captivated with it. I never even heard the name Alexander Humboldt, yet I’m learning that many of the ideas about and ways we now understand the natural world are because of Humboldt.
In the late 18th and early 19th century, when nature was divided into categories and seen as separate mechanisms, he believed the natural world was all interconnected and spent his life proving it. He also saw the devastating impact man was having on the environment through farming and logging and was an early abolitionist. After his travels to the America’s and meeting the indigenous people there, he was very alone in knowing them as equals, not the feeble minded savages they were seen as at the time.
And he’s a wonderful personality too, creative and curious, obsessive, driven, and generous. A scientist (before the word scientist was coined) he collected , documented and measured everything around him including the blueness of the sky. But he also believed in the importance of the imagination and his books often read like poetry. His writing influenced, Darwin, Walt Whitman, Poe and Thoreau, just to name a few.
I think Alexander Humboldt was on my mind this morning when I went out to take my Monday Morning Video. Is it too weird, I asked Jon, to talk about frozen manure. But I was just observing my environment, (like Humboldt did) the changes in the weather since yesterday seem drastic. As evidenced by the frozen water in the heated chicken bowl, the frozen pockets of earth in the barnyard that yesterday were mud, my frozen fingers and the frozen manure.
At the end of the video my voice gets drowned out by the wind. Maybe it’s for the best I thought, unlike Humboldt who would have been inspecting at it under a microscope, I only have so much to say about frozen manure.
6 thoughts on “Good Morning From Bedlam Farm 1/4/16. The Time of Frozen Manure”
Well Maria,we’ve all been thinking it, but you had the courage to say it outloud – Tis the season of frozen manure. I’m going to look into that book you mentioned too. Maybe if you hadn’t had Frozen Manure in the title of your post I would not have paid as much attention, and then I would have missed out on the book referral. Merci!
I just finished it Janet and it’s taken up space in my body, it’s coursing through my blood. I’m trying to figure out why it had such an impact on me. If you read it let me know what you think.
Hi, just wanted to mention that although you were talking about frozen manure, I have a tendency to notice sounds… like the sound of the geese that I assume were flying overhead as you were speaking. Life has so many different aspects and as far as I’m concerned… to notice is to live. If they were the same each and every day without change; we would become bored. Nothing new would temp us to look out a window or to take a picture… why take pictures if tomorrow everything would be identical. Enjoy your new year and the insight around you.
I couldn’t agree more Jean, and yes those were geese overhead. I think you’re right that noticing what’s around us makes us alive. Thanks for making me think about it a little more.
Nice to hear your voice, Maria. It is very pleasant. The topic of frozen manure is not off putting to me, I am a nurse. Frozen manure is very descriptive of the current situation, it tells a lot! I also loved hearing the geese and the wind. Thanks for sharing.
Then you know all about it Ruth. Seeing what’s in front of us and the changes. Thanks!