I appreciated my youth on the broad plains of North Dakota, unbounded by a horizon that rose before the dawn and dipped beyond sun. Much of my time was spent in solitude on the open prairie, tracking clouds as they journeyed across the sky. I loved to lie on the sweet pasture grass and feel the cool earth beneath my back, as the sun baked my face with it brilliant glory.
I’d listen to hear the sounds of the prairie; the whistling breeze running through the barley. I spent hours watching the dancing waves of grain as they bowed to the pulse of the wind. I’d feel the melodic rise and fall of a song that would be punctuated by the plaintiff call of the meadowlark, repeating an encircling melody for his mate.
As the hush of evening approached, the song would be returned in the distance, almost reflective in its tone. Then another would take up the song, repeating it back and forth until darkness descended, covering the earth with a blanket of calm.