An Ode to the Lawn I Wish to Eradicate

Photo by Evan Dvorkin on Unsplash

You are sturdy. Grass, no matter what I do, you come back. You sneak out from under six inches of cardboard and wood mulch. You spring up through the cracks between bricks I’ve weighed down upon you. You have held down this soil for decades, without complaint. You fill in every space. Why do I want to eradicate you, something so strong and determined? I claim you are the wrong thing. You cultivate a bacterial soil culture, and I want mycelial. You are shallow, and I want deep. I can’t eat you; I want what I can eat. You are everywhere, and I say enough. 40 million acres of the cultivated crops in this country are you, all you. Where there used to be woodland, now there is you. Where there used to be prairie, now there is you. Where there used to be farmland, now there is you. Only you, vast expanse of green monoculture, demanding every pesticide and fertilizer imaginable to poison our children, our pets, our streams, to maintain your façade. I am at war with you. But did you ask for this? Did you see an opportunity, and seize it? Or are you like everything else that gets co-opted by colonialism? Do you, too, long to return to your original self, your ten-foot-deep roots trodden by ungulates and munched into manure? Do you miss the wild prairies your ancestors inhabited? If left alone, would you secede to the “weeds,” the delectable dandelions, the prickly nettles, the beephilic clovers? Would you relax and become one of many? You don’t maintain yourself. As I dig you up, as I replace you, as I sheet mulch you into oblivion, I also want to be friends. Lawn, let’s go out together, you becoming rich fertile soil teeming with mycelial networks to nourish a diverse habitat of floral natives, and me, composting the colonizer’s mindset installed from an early age and allowing myself to return again to the Earth.

Originally published at on May 5, 2020.

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