Interview with a Grower

Interview with a Grower [series continued]

By MJ Oscar | Image by Justin McIvor

“Mmmm. I do appreciate a beautiful day. Something you just want to bask in forever. Glorious.”

  The Grower is looking at me. Here is a man who assesses many situations, and I feel he is assessing me.

From the porch I look around at my surroundings; it is a beautiful day. Nice and arranged.

“I am a lucky man, I know. I know because every morning I wake up and revel in it.” The growers laugh is genuine, encompassing. “I was in the military,” he said. “That gave me a specific kind of training and lifestyle. Protecting the tribe is powerful. And tragedy is all natural.”

  He is looking out now, sinking into his military memories once again. His facial profile is defined. More like chiseled.
“So I was out of the military, broke, and a little loss for a second. Not quite knowing who I was, or where to go. Through a couple brothers and the grace of god I end up here. Growing weed out in the mountains.”

Justin McIvor
The grower winks at me. His speech is metered, relaxed to almost a slow pace.


“Quit drinking too. The whole lifestyle and having as much weed as I could ever want to smoke. Drinking wasn’t good for me, it held me down – made me so heavy. When I first came out to stay with my buddy I had a kind of culture shock. The beauty and space of it all was almost overwhelming. [Being] out in the mountains is like a dream come true. That repetitive dream you never can keep in wakefulness, except you know you dreamt it and you know it is good. I’ve [felt] happy for the last 15 years in a way I had never known existed.”

  The grower moves his head towards the thick smoke in the sky, my eyes follow his and continue to look up in the atmosphere.

Time passes, and right as I wonder if I might ask another question, he leans back into conversation, “I spend my days right now in the heat of the sun and blue sky. I prune and tender my plants in hopes that I make some good cash to carry me through. I like to be prepared and yet I believe in the moment. I have seen enough that it keeps me knowing what a fleeting and unpredictable thing life is. My favorite moments this time of year as the light deps are just coming ready is to prune without gloves. I had this friend, Annie, years ago in Boulder, she was from Nebraska though. Anyway, she always talked about her time at an ashram in India. How they would walk through the fields of Ganja with hands out. All the stickiness and hash to smoke. Finger hash. I love the feel of the stickiness building up into resin. I enjoy gardening without gloves. My ladies looking so good, feeling good. This time of year is such a catch-twenty two. I look around and I want to whoop with joy – those buds bursting and big. You could just stare for hours at the marvel of it. At the same time it is the time you are most likely to get robbed if it is going to happen. Now me, I been doing this a long time now. That gives me an advantage in some ways and then the disadvantage of just being in the same place for so long – ups your possibility of random discovery. Not long and I’ll be taking down and hanging. Going to spend some time diving around in Vietnam and the Maldives this winter,” he said. “Whenever I can, you will find me first thing in the morning. On my porch, looking out forever. Smoking a joint, most times with my coffee. Sit there and fade awhile. The birdlife plays out above and around. I am taken in that way, you know? Will of god. Lavishing attentions. Propher. A chance. I go with god myself, or an ever changing interpretation of what that might mean anyway.” A low sound punctuated the moment, maybe a chuckle, maybe a grunt. And there it was.

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Emerald contributor since March 2012

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