“larklike over the wheat”: Ted Kooser’s “So This Is Nebraska”

Photo courtesy of Jordan McQueen via Unsplash.

Photo courtesy of Jordan McQueen via Unsplash.

It’s been hot in Boston this week, certainly more hot than I like (which, to be fair, is not very hot at all), but not as hot as it could be. One of the hottest days I remember involved driving through Nebraska in summertime, years ago, when the temperature outside was 106 degrees. I don’t think I’ve seen a thermometer hit that temperature in all the years since.

“So This is Nebraska,” by former poet laureate Ted Kooser, describes that kind of hot day, though with far more attention to detail than I can conjure from memory. And oddly enough, it made me feel a little cooler.

By the way, there’s a bar before the poem that has a recording of Ted Kooser reading the poem. It’s great.

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2 thoughts on ““larklike over the wheat”: Ted Kooser’s “So This Is Nebraska”

  1. I think having the recording of him reading his own poem helped me appreciate the poem more. I liked the “loosening barns” being compared to old ladies with tractors under their skirts.

  2. I, too, have been in Nebraska, on a day when, according to the old-fashioned bank thermometer on Main Street, it was very, very hot. I can’t say that I ever would want mice to build a nest in my muffler or elsewhere, but I did like the last image of putting your hand out and waving over the wheat.

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