Of all the crops, true peace is tops

I took CJ to the terrific UW Science Expeditions last weekend — he had a great time, petting the stuffed badger, looking through a microscope for the first time, filling (and almost breaking) a pipette, and holding a caterpillar provided by the Department of Entomology.  He declined, as did I, the opportunity to handle a Madagascar hissing cockroach, but apparently we were unusual because there was a line to handle the Madagascar hissing cockroach.  Lots of the exhibits were presented by the departments in the Agriculture School — at one of these I learned that Wisconsin has an official state soil, established by statute in 1983.  But not only that — our official state soil has an official state soil song!  And it gets better — the composer of the Antigo Silt Loam song, Francis D. Hole, isn’t just a one-hit wonder but a prolific musical interpreter of soil. I give you “Some Think That Soil is Dirt:”

Some think that soil is dirt and quite disgusting.
This is not true.

Some think that soil is dirt and quite disgusting.
This is not true.

Some think it makes the air all brown and dusting.
Good dust’s in me!

Some think it makes the air all brown and dusting.
Good dust’s in you!

Praise Mother earth she is our earthly Mother
She gives us bread. She gives us bread

Praise ground, the holy ground that’s softly under
Our feet that tread. Our feet that tread.

Vigor, Vigor from the soil does flow;
Roots and life are teeming down below

No wonder that the land’s so green,
the ferns and flowers so fresh and clean!

Soil is everywhere;
from it sweet blessings gently flow.

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2 thoughts on “Of all the crops, true peace is tops

  1. In our local zoo, the Madagascar hissing cockroach is kept in a glass box — I don’t know how the kids would respond to an invitation to handle it, but I suspect they might get in the line…

  2. Nadine says:

    I went to school with Hoel’s daughter, but never knew much about him. Your post prompted me to do a bit more searching and I learned a great deal more about my former neighbor. If anyone else is interested in learning more about this pedologist, the UW-Madison Soils Department has created a Francis D. Hole Memorial Webpage that’s full of wonderful material and links.

    Thanks for mentioning Hoel and sending me on this journey of discovery

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