• Jeni Kelsch

Call me Mud



We have lived in our house for about a year and a half now. The one constant, from pre-construction to today, is the mud. We have been sloshing through an endless sea of mud since we first came to look at this property, I thought it would get better. I was wrong. The only thing I miss about my old house is grass, we have none here. We tried to get some. We put seed out on the mud, it never sprouted. We got more aggressive, we put sod on the mud, it died. We put gravel down, the mud ate it. We put concrete pavers on the mud, the mud rose above them in the rain and left a slick of mud across them, reclaiming them for its own. It seems nothing, absolutely nothing, is more powerful than mud. This is something I did not know before. I had walked across mud’s dry relative, dirt, all the days of my life and never suspected that crazy Uncle Mud lived nearby, popping out in bad weather to wreak as much havoc as possible. I didn’t think the situation had broken me until I found myself having a conversation with the mud as I stood boot deep in it the other day.


“So Mud, looks like you are here to stay, I am hoping we can come to some sort of compromise. If I acquiesce the sides of the yard to you, could you maybe stop pulling my boots off my feet as I walk by?


I don’t know why you think that is so funny.


Furthermore, I don’t really think it is right that you should be here ALL the time, I think it fitting that you should at least retreat into the boggy areas of the yard on sunny days. And when you leave, try not to take the grass seed with you.


Speaking of grass seed, I don’t know about you, but I think a man with some hair on his head is quite handsome, hows about letting a little seed sprout out on you occasionally. I’ve read changing something about your appearance can do wonders to lift your mood, and you have seemed a little down to me lately. You’ve been hanging out around the barn, threatening to pull the feet off the chickens for days now. What’s up Mud? Now your coming after the cow, trying to suck her feet into place. You know she doesn’t like that. You’re not fooling anyone, with your innocent, “Oh, was that me? Sorry, I just don’t know my own strength” routine. Leave the livestock alone Mud.

It just keeps escalating, I saw you try to take the feet out from under the UPS guy when he thought he had made it to safety on the pavers to the front porch. That’s low, even for Mud.

I don’t see why we can’t be friends here Mud. I appreciate your ability to give me literally a place to stand, but I don’t see why movement is such an insult to your dignity. I know we don’t seem to think much of you but I can safely say the dog loves you. She celebrates your presence with each and every hole she digs, she wears you across her nose with pride and often brings you right into the house. How can you not feel loved?


I hope I have cleared up any misgivings you may have had as ultimately, it’s not so much that I want to get rid of you, I just want to nestle you under a warm blanket of topsoil and vegetation. It’s really an act of love. At least think about it Mud. I am sure the dog will still seek you out, you will not be forgotten. Can’t we just get along?”


Mud did not reply, which is probably a sign of my sanity, but I do think it retreated a bit by the front door. Baby steps.

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