Lammas without Corn

SUBHEAD: And stoutly we bow and cut down the corn that sweetly did grow.

 By Juan Wilson on 2 August 2012 for Island Breath - 

Image above: Cornfield in failure, mowed down. From (

August 1st is traditionally marked as the midpoint of summer - its very essence. It's an old tradition - Probably a few thousands years old, at least. It is one of the cross-quarter days of the European pagan calendars that observed and celebrated the epitome of each yearly season. The English, Scottish and Irish traditions had differing names and days but generally agreed on their significance. In Ireland these holidays were:
Imbolc - February 1st in Winter (Candlemas); Beltaine - May 1st in Spring (May Day); Lunasa - August 1st in Summer (Lammas); Samhain - November 1st in Autumn (Halloween).
Here in Hawaii Lunasa (called Lammas in Scotland) has been beautiful. We have had a full moon in the night sky and this midsummer has been fairly moist with moderate temperatures. Here in Hanapepe Valley, on the south side of Kauai it can get pretty dry in mid August.

This holiday falls between Summer Solstice and Fall Equinox, and has been called a Cross Quarter Day. While the Solstice is the first day of summer, Lammas represents the height of the season. It is a feast of the first harvest with ancient roots in the pagan festival of Lugnasad.

For thousands of years the harvest was one of the most significant human events. Although it does not seem as important in our technological society, a good harvest meant survival during the coming winter. People have celebrated this occasion in many cultures throughout history. The Greeks worshiped Demeter, Goddess of the Grain, in a Green Festival which marked the first harvest.

The Iroquois indians honored the Corn Spirit which protected their crops, and they held a Green Corn Festival in early August. In Pre-Christain Europe the harvest festival was celebrated at this time. The earth was fecund with ripening crops, and it was a time of passion, life and abundance. Lugh was the God of Light and the God of the Corn (in Europe the word corn was a generic term which meant any kind of grain). An old British poem goes like this:

Now Lammas comes in
Our harvest begins.
We have now to endeavour to get the corn in.
We reap and we mow,
And stoutly we bow
And cut down the corn that sweetly did grow.
This is not going to be happening this year in the USA. Over half the counties in the Corn Belt of the country are in a severe drought. Half of that corn will likely be lost. And as much as 90% of that corn will be GMO corn with about half of the crop, mandated by federal law, to make ethanol additive for gasoline. Needless to say, burning that grain to keep cars running only adds to the conditions that are creating the drought. If it were not already true with regards fossil fuel use in providing fertilizer, pesticides, farm equipment, and transportation to produce GMO monoculture corn - the ethanol mandates creates a direct linkage between corn prices and fuel prices.  

Each reinforces the rise in the price of the other - another negative feedback loop - as if there were not enough already. The Corn Belt was once the Grass Belt with topsoil ten feet deep (now less than 6"). Nomadic bison fed on the grass and fertilized it in their passage. Although maize (corn) was the grain of the Americas it was not meant to be a industrialized monoculture that covered the Mississippi watershed with the effect of destroying life in the Gulf of Mexico with its soil (as well as pesticide and fertilizer runoff). 

Reducing the corn cover will reduce the number of cars and people in north America. That is happening now, without our management, with the effects of Climate Change. We should have been working towards reducing consumption and population for the last 40 years, but we we lulled into the GOP "Morning in America". Hey you! Jimmy Inhohe, Oklahoma US Senator who uses the Bible to refute Climate Change:
"Well actually the Genesis 8:22 that I use in there is that ‘as long as the earth remains there will be seed time and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, day and night,’ my point is, God’s still up there. The arrogance of people to think that we, human beings, would be able to change what He is doing in the climate is to me outrageous." (
Oklahoma City temperature is predicted to reach 111º today with a break over the weekend. Friday 108º, Saturday 106º with a balmy Sunday of 97º. This ain't normal. If you believe in the Bible, I'd say its time to go the the Prayer Tower in Tulsa and pray for rain.

What we should be doing is reducing our dependence on processed meat in our diets. We need to move cattle, poultry and swine off corn based feed. It's not what they are designed to eat. While we are at it we should get our cats and dogs off GMO corn. And don't forget yourself.

Check all packaged food ingredients for High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) and stay away from it. HFCS is now over 15% of the calories consumed by the average American. Soylent Yellow - It's in the Coke!



HeadUpNoRegrets Blog said...

Hello there! Do you have personal pages in online social media websites?

Juan Wilson said...

Mele Kalikimaka,

I try to stay away from the social media sites.

Have a great holiday.

IB Publisher

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