Taunt-rope muscles slack.
His thick leather shoes slow and stop,
and two granite eyes gaze gently.
From his own earth he rose
and, gazing, he feels it, he hears it.
The slender, fragile wheat shoots
with their thin-chested whiteness showing
are greening warily, wonderingly,
inching up from the black, soft earth.
Naked, defenseless now
but swaying summer gold,
ripened by the growth of God
come harvest time.
The man pushes back his hat,
Showing white on his forehead
a white band like a halo.
He stoops, he touches the little sprout,
his hammer-hard hands
caress delicately, finely feel its whiteness.
He raises it to his mouth and tastes,
and a gentle smile refashions
his stone-cut face – a smile,
a tender smile in this rock-hard man.