Wednesday, April 14, 2010


Life has been oh! so busy these days. I was in a fury of detail-arranging a week and a half ago, as I prepared to be gone a week from my family.

A week - a whole, long week! Me, myself & I, staying with my dear friend, Sarah, while I went to a conference on communicating effectively - public-speaking more precisely.

It was fantastic - I learned so much! It was a crazy, crazy schedule. I barely had time to think - let alone blog - while I was there.

So, here I am, almost back into routine at home, catching up on stuff I missed last week, and ready for Poetry Wednesday.

To submit to a life of idleness
Is no intent of mine.
I shall keep the home fires burning,
Though I live on borrowed time.
-Rube Rustic

Rube Rustic is the pen name for Rene Jay, a pig farmer in Kendall County, Illinois. His descendants have donated the family farm to the Kendall County Forest Preserve, and one of my clients is illustrating/writing/creating the panels for the welcome center at the farm. I was lucky enough to be hired to help copy edit and write the story of the Jay family.

Rene himself was quite the Renaissance man. He wrote poetry, farmed, played violin and rode Harleys. Plus, he was well-versed in botany - plants and birds especially - and the history of his family and his county. Interestingly enough, he died on his tractor in the middle of the field. He was in the middle of working, because by the time he was found, the engine was silent because the tractor had run out of gas.

I'm sorry I don't have a picture of Rene - but if you're ever in Illinois, especially Little Rock, Illinois, stop in at Jay Woods, and read more about him, his family & his farm.

I see a field trip in my family's future!


Molly Sabourin said...

That is wonderful, Michelle!! What a great project! I can't wait to hear about your week away. I hope you feel rejuvenated!

Jenny Schroedel said...


That does sound like a fantastic project! Amazing that he died on the tractor...I am intrigued by this man and look forward to hearing more as your project progresses.

Kris Livovich said...

A whole week. Sounds like heaven right now. Your project sounds really interesting. The Illinois version of Wendell Berry.

We did watch the championship game, by the way. It was tense and both my husband and I were cheering. We really wanted Butler to win. The kids were in and out, Elia would occasionally ask, "Who's winning, the duke or the butler?"

Beth said...

I love that poem. Profound and right to the point, like a proverb. Great pick!