Rye diary: Day fourteen, what feeds us

Slowly, the rye is ripening. Or just staying damp. It was raining softly when I took this photo.

rye patch

Note that tall stalk just right of the center. Here’s a closer look:

headless rye stalk

That intricate, jewel-like seed head seen in earlier photos is gone. Just gone.

This is the mystery: The rye heads have been disappearing. You might think they’d fallen off from their own weight. But the ground shows no evidence of fallen seed heads. Something must be coming in the night and dining on the rye.

And trampling the center of the patch.

Maybe multiple creatures: one that rampages through low, and one that attacks from higher up.

I say attack, but I’m trying to mean feast. I had nurtured ideas that I might be able to harvest my tiny crop of rye and make something of it. I could cook the berries like rice, or grind them into some trace amount of flour to use in muffin. Now, that looks unlikely. By the time it’s ready, it will be gone. But it seems I’m pleasing my uninvited guest.

It’s got me thinking about what we feed and what feeds us. When you’re in your day, how do you nourish your writing? And how does it nourish you? The rye patch reminds me to make better choices, to feed and be fed by what’s important to me.

And to take time to enjoy the few stalks left.

rye seed head close up