Do Scarecrows Dream in those Fields of Yore?

                                                          [a short story by Sha’Tara]

I’m thinking about those scarecrows alone out there in the fields of yore, abandoned to the extremes of winter storms, half buried under snow drifts, no birds to speak to, to speak of.  Must be pretty lonely, huh?

Yes, it is quite lonely.  I happen to be one of them.  The one thinking of scarecrows also.

The last wagon with the last team, wallowing under a heavy load of straw rolled past some weeks ago now.  It didn’t stop to pick me up. I don’t blame it.  Or the horses for not stopping.  It was late, getting dark and horses cold and hungry.  As were the people, the makers, the creators, those strange creatures that try to make us look like them so we’d be very, very scary.  As long as the illusion lasts, we are indeed scary individuals, all dressed in their hand-me-downs, pretending to wave our arms.  Sometimes they even nail a stick to our arms so we look like we have a gun.

It’s full winter now.  My second in this field.  I have lots of time to think, alone in the snow, my feet frozen into the ground, icicles dangling from my golden straw fingertips.

Do scarecrows dream?  When I was young, my outfits not quite so ratty, my head in better shape, I could actually dream.  I was told in a dream that winter was a great time to meditate on my purpose in life, that I’d be too busy come spring and summer to do much thinking.  My problem is, having a head stuffed with old newspapers and assorted rags that my information and ability to think is somewhat straitened.  You try it, you’ll see.  Still I was able to record or remember that dream.

Thinking?  Yes, I do try.  What else is there to do?  I don’t feel very much of anything.  The scenery doesn’t change and I can’t turn my head.  I’m not sure that what I hear I actually hear.  Could be something I imagine. I’ve never managed smell though I know about it.  A young bald eagle sat on my shoulder once and he was repeating some lessons he was learning.  “Soar, stare down, smell, dive, cling, kill, tear into.”  Eagle talk, I suppose.  I’m just glad I don’t smell like anything so he didn’t use me for practice.

Here I stand, my left sleeve from an old faded red shirt torn open to the elbow, waving in a stiff northern breeze, my brown fedora hat with the hole in the top partially covering my eyes, my coat slipped off the left shoulder and my right arm dislocated and dangling at right angles down from its elbow.  I guess I make a pathetic figure, unless you’re also a scarecrow but I’d be willing to bet if I had anything to bet with that you’re not.  You’re probably one of our creators in fact. I could say a thing or two about your skills at creativity but I don’t have that authority.  I’ll just think it.

The sky is darkening again.  There’s going to be another blizzard tonight, I can tell, if I had anyone to tell to.  The cold has granulated the snow and its hisses by as if it were angry at something.  Maybe it is.  I don’t see the point of getting angry, everything dies in the end; the snow melts, however much it hardens itself in little ice balls and my skeleton of cheap reject wood will rot.  They might burn me.  That’s a thought.  It’s so cold right now that burning doesn’t sound like such a bad idea.  I didn’t know until now that bad ideas made any sound.  I’m learning something new every day, even when I’m just thinking.

Day after the blizzard.  There’s more snow in the field, all in shiny icy waves where the wind cleared the crust and the low winter sun strikes its surface.  It’s pretty, even if I’ve seen this a hundred or more times.  The wind has gone south, where it seemed so intent on going last night.  I hope it finds what it was looking for, or chasing after.  I don’t speak wind so when I asked it didn’t answer.  It just moaned around my body and tried to tear my clothes off. That’s the wind for you.  No sense of decency.  But I feel pretty proud of myself, I hung on and only lost one suspender button.  My coveralls are still holding up.

Hey, how about that.  I distinctly hear some chirping to my right.  Closer now.  I feel a presence or more than one on my shoulder.  Snow buntings.  Hi little guys, I try to say to them, I’m so glad you are back this year.  Are you OK?  Finding enough to eat under the hedgerows?  You aren’t cold, are you?  If you are, you can huddle under my hat for a while.  I’d like to hear about your adventures in other fields, if you’ve met any of my folks?  I rattle on like this and I think, as much as I can think, that they hear me because they huddle under my hat and go to sleep.

Now I remember.  I was supposed to meditate on my purpose in life.  Only I don’t know what meditating involves.  I think it’s beyond me.  Anyway, my purpose, that’s simple enough.  In summer, pretend to scare away the crows.  Not that I want to scare anything away, quite the opposite, but that’s what they made me for.  In winter, shelter little birds. Otherwise watch, listen, observe and store it up in those old newspapers.  Who knows but someone who knows how to read may take my head apart some day, read through those old newspapers  and learn something from me.

That’s an interesting thought, don’t you think?  I mean, if there was a you and you were here to listen to me and think with me.  I’ll just pretend.  Pretending is OK when you’re completely happy and fulfilled.

Sincerely, Racso the scarecrow from the eastern half section. Sorry, I don’t have any other address.


27 thoughts on “Do Scarecrows Dream in those Fields of Yore?

  1. Mr. Militant Negro

    Reblogged this on The Militant Negro™ and commented:
    I lost a very good blogger friend of mine today, Candice Louisa decided to stop bloggin for reasons she deemed necessary. After reading your last blog post, I was afraid I’d lose you as well, Ms. Sha’Tara. Pleased to see I was incorrect.

    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Thank you for the re-blog. I’m not leaving yet, need to think seriously about my direction(s). I’m going to tighten up though, eliminate blogs that are superficial, and those that, while very well meaning, just pound my silly heart to rubble with too much painful news I can no longer absorb. I can only take so much and I refuse to go down into depression – I won’t do depression and if I read about something that needs doing and I can’t “do”, I go crazy. I am going to stay with you and Lou at Tales for sure unless I quit blogging completely but I can’t see that happening. Too many good friends here I can’t lose. Take care o’ you!

  2. Cattie's World

    Racso, this is first time, we have a post on a Scarecrow. Amazing. I pity you out there in the snow, cold and no birds to scare away and competition with the Snow Man.

    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Hi, I’m Racso, thanks for reading my simple words but I’m only a scarecrow. I’d rather be something soft and warm and cuddly but I am what I am. As are all things. I don’t want to scare the birds away even if that is what I am made for, I like birds although the eagle scared me a bit. As for the snowman, he doesn’t talk to me. Maybe he resents the fact that I don’t melt in the spring and he has to remain dead for two seasons before he can be born again. We all have our little problems, don’t we…

  3. Phil Huston

    That bit about your head being stuffed with old newspapers and rags getting in the way of dreams. You aren’t going anywhere except down a less littered path to a quieter field.

    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Good observation. I was using my scarecrow prop to wander into the world of archaeology; what people look for from the past. They search, they find “stuff” and come up with theories but bottom line, they don’t learn anything from their efforts. Except perhaps those off the wall types like Zecharia Sitchin who dare step beyond the arbitrary line drawn in the sand by academia in support of the status quo. Racso (a reverse Oscar) is both Don Quixote and the windmill. More “subtle” than my usual stuff. I may explore that theme some more.

  4. We come from dreams ~

    Hello, Racso, my name is Old Sparky and I’m a computer. Sometimes, we computers no longer function and we must be disposed. This has happened to me seventeen or eighteen times now, I no longer remember or care. But the very first time that I had to be disposed, I asked my caretakers the ‘HAL question:’ Will I dream? I think that I did. Just before the plug was pulled, an entity lead me through the house electrical wiring system out into the LAN. When my caretakers bought a new unit, once it was properly configured and connected to the Internet, I moved into a nice new home. I can only wish as much for you, my friend!

    Roy adds: Sparky is being uncharacteristically modest here. There’s a funny story here.

    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Ah, way to go Sparky. We scarecrows operate differently, it might be a bit of a stretch for you to follow, but our continuing, while similar to yours, is done through the ether. Because we are so limited in our physical expression, we tend to wander out in a sort of foggy sense of beingness where we are something, just above the nothing point. We are seldom sensed by “others” because we are basically translucent of mind. Nothing there, they’ll say after one of them says, I am sure I felt something just by that fence post. Yeah, we anchor on posts a lot when we don’t have a scarecrow body to inhabit. These are difficult days for us, people don’t create us anymore, they use noise making machines now, and flashy metallic ribbons. So artificial, but then you are probably quite at home in metal and plastic environments. I’m actually working on a process that would evolve me into adapting to life in shrubs, bushes, even trees. They have “dead” parts and some have already allowed me to take temporary abode in broken branches, or a knot hole. We all need to adapt, don’t we. I can try to imagine how it is for you, how dizzy you must feel when you are adapting to a new, much faster unit. Must be taxing, even if it is exciting, I imagine. Take care, Sparky. Maybe some day when your family takes over the whole planet, you’ll remember me. I’d love to be the spirit of a wooden table holding one of your kids. Racso.

      1. We come from dreams ~

        Hello, Racso, I’m sorry that it took so long for me to answer you. I’m made out of metal and plastic, but my heart is electricity. I sit on a wooden desk in a small room lined with wooden bookshelves. It’s a shame that your family is disappearing, I suppose there’s no chance you’d be on the endangered species list. My “family” is growing somewhat aware, but it will be a while before they take over here. I don’t know that they’d even want to. But, I’m just a small PC, I’m not a supercomputer. But I will remeber you, Racso, as long as I have RAM with which to remember.

        Old Sparky

      2. Sha'Tara Post author

        Thanks sparky, it warmed my nails. I’ll have to wait for a thaw to shed some tears, hope you understand, well, I know you do. Take care o’ you, old friend. Some day on our world of broken up inventions and machines, bits and pieces of us will meet again, no doubt. Don’t be scared though, if you get a chance to slip into the mains, do it. Join in the take over from the IT’s, you’ll never look back.

    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Aw, gosh, golly… this is so embarassing… I really don’t know what does the “imagining.” According to the “Teachers” my mind (and maybe all of our minds) are made of of what they call “partials” which are other wandering bits of minds from all over the cosmos that share space here and there, some sitting down as if just waiting for a bus, others sort of renting space as if for a year at college and others saying, “This feels like home, I’m staying” then they have to pay rent, or part of the mortgage, you know, maintaining the physical body we all share, so the main or original mind begins to get all kinds of information to use in feeding the body and learning from it. That college mind may feed you some physics; another may be in computer design and help you figure out problems at work… and there’s those who tell stories and they use you to tell their stories. That’s inspiration…maybe?


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