I live about two miles away from this beautiful, open-grassland field, so I grew up taking in its beauty daily. My great-grandparents parents also grew up here. An old, abandoned house that sits surrounded by rolling grass lands. Coming from this native area, my family and I are well aware of how important wind is to the landscape. This particular picture was taken as part of my senior pictures. My photographer had the idea to use a parachute as my skirt in order to show the true effects of the South Dakota wind. The wind is invisible to some, but the parachute makes the wind manifest for the outsider. My dad farms fields in all directions around this place. Our family history was formed near this very spot. Not only does this location hold meaning in my heart with regard to beauty, but this is the original homestead of my great-grandparents, so this location is very meaningful in regards to family, also. This place is truly home even though college is home for me right now. Maybe this spot is not as beautiful to someone who does not know its history, but my eyes light up when I visit, my heart skips a beat, and my worries go away.
I see beauty when I look at a rolling landscape—miles upon miles of open farm land covered with greens. The simple beauty of South Dakota is revealed in the small details of this landscape. The wind rolls across a lush, open grass field, the fullness of the dense, multi-colored trees as they lose their leaves in the coming months of fall, and the pure simplicity of how a barren area can hold more beauty than any other thing in the world. Any South Dakotan resident will be ecstatic if there is a slight breeze and praise the Lord for the beautiful day. But, if an individual who is not used to wind was asked what they thought of the wind, they would simply say, “this wind is crazy.” At the same time they said that, I would sit back and laugh to myself knowing this day is perfection. The nature of wind is truly a gift from above.
In the photo above, South Dakota is represented very elegantly. The rolling plains are made beautiful by the crops planted and beginning to sprout and, you probably guessed right, by wind. I keep looking at the element of wind in this photo and, on that day, I had no idea what image was going to be created.
Wind is something you do not see but know it is there. The true definition of wind is defined as the natural movement of air of any velocity. But, there is another definition that describes wind as a destructive force or influence. 1 It rolls silently through the plains, making its presence known, yet is blind to the human eye. Sometimes, the destruction it leaves is very relevant and can be seen clearly. The wind billows through the trees, knocking down landmarks and does not have one care in the world about what it destroys. This is when wind has its not-so-beautiful moments. Despite the devastation the wind leaves, a sense of beauty is still present in the destruction it leaves behind. Just as winter kills most life on the plains, there is a beauty to that cycle knowing spring will bring forth new life. When it is windy, I do not think I have ever said to myself, “I wonder why we can’t see the wind.” It is not something I think about on daily basis. However, how amazing is it that something that creates so much beauty does not show its face but in other things – the grain, the trees, the parachute. I simply cannot wrap my head around the idea of wind. Yes, there are times that wind can cause quite an uproar and leave us broken because of what it leaves behind. Still, wind for me, means beauty. It can be a wind seeming to blow from all directions, a side wind, or straight-lined wind; yet, all these forms generate the same effect. The word “rolling” to me literally means wind pushing the grass along giving it the perfect, wave-like effect. The rolling plains would not be rolling without wind.
By: Morgan Hanson. I am a sophomore nursing major. I am from rural Webster, South Dakota.