From Dirt You Came, and to Dirt You Shall Return.

English: Agri-Fab tiller

English: Agri-Fab tiller (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve always wanted to write a short humorous piece on the vernal equinox, ending it on a serious note that highlights my superior skill as a writer. Oh, if only Shakespeare were around today to glean bits of wisdom from the words that flow from my pen…

But that’s another story.

Springtime. When a young man’s heart turns to fancy, and then to dirt. Before you ask, yes, I said dirt. It all happened hundreds of years ago when we beat our swords and weapons into plowshares. And the  townsfolk rejoiced. Then we brutally beat our plowshares into tillers of soil. This took quite some time, but once again, the townsfolk rejoiced.

Once we had the tillers of soil and many implements with which to cultivate foodstuffs, we then began to drill deep holes into the earth to retrieve a substance suitable to power the tillers of soil. And once again, the townsfolk rejoiced.

We then built massive refining plants to refine the suitable substance we had retrieved from the deep holes in the earth and placed it in the tillers of soil. This time, the townsfolk did not rejoice, awaiting the outcome of the running of the tiller of soil.

A man of burliness, who resided in the town, stepped forward unto the machine, which tills the soil. He grabbed the cord and pulled twice. The machine sputtered and began to hum with a loud, steady rumble. The man of burliness grabbed the handles on the tiller of soil, pulled the levers, and began to till the soil. The townsfolk sighed a great sigh of relief and then rejoiced.

Many seeds were planted and much was harvested in order to feed the townsfolk. After many years, the tiller of soil ceased to hum. Since no one had developed a curriculum in order to become a mechanic to repair the tiller of soil, the townsfolk beat the tiller of soil once again into a plowshare. Not wanting to stop there, they beat the plowshare into swords and other weapons of violence and mayhem.

The townsfolk ate the last of the bounty harvested from the communal garden. They rejoiced one last time and due to the misappropriation of a slightly-rotten string bean, a great argument arose and all were killed with the swords and weapons of violence and mayhem. The last remaining resident of the town sadly sat down and starved to death, not knowing that the bounty of potatoes, tomatoes, and eggplant left in the communal garden were edible.

In order to tie this story to the craft of writing, we must look at the slightly-rotten string bean. As you’re cleaning up your manuscript, be on the lookout for the tiniest instances of rot. Even a smidgen of decay can ensnare your novel in its ever-spreading tendrils.

Now excuse me, I’ve got to douse those pesky tomatoes with herbicide.

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