“Earth-Shaker – II” / A Memorable Fancy #296

[It was a day of three digits, like “911.” This was “410.” On April 10th, we finally caught sight of the being that had so distressed us. But long before that day we had been scourged by this Thing, this Bane that we learned to call “Earth-Shaker.”]

In the atmosphere of general panic, Earth-Shaker was blamed for any unexplained event. Farmers, for example, told reporters that their crops were being pulled into the earth. The Shaker stole crops, they claimed: roots of plants, grasped, sucked from underneath into some giant maw.

After study, the Farm Bureau recommended planting only fast-growing shallow-rooted crops, and treading as softly as possible as harvest-time neared.

“Next week I’ll harvest,” said a farmer in a loud voice. Secretly, he began his harvest the very next morning. Having got almost half his crop in before Earth-Shaker intervened, he was widely celebrated for his cleverness.

As autumn continued its uneasy course, we discovered that soybeans weren’t the Shaker’s grand passion, so at least for the time being, that crop would be – relatively – safe. After harvest we all ate soybeans; glumness and distaste prevailed.

[To be continued]

 00 SeeSaw front cover small image

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