Children in the Corn

February 13, 2008
By Marilyn Yennie, Grand Meadow, MN

“Which way should we go?” my brother asked.
“I don’t know.” I replied. You never really know what fear is until you are in the middle of a cornfield, you are lost, and have no sense of direction. It’s hard to imagine that there could be more fear after you recover from the scary situation, but in this case it is actually possible. You don’t realize, sometimes, how dangerous a situation can be until you get older. My brothers can agree that it was not a fun time and it was pretty scary. This is one of the first times that I was truly scared.

My brothers and I were in kindergarten and first grade. We were in a foster home and we were playing in the yard like a lot of young kids usually do. Our foster parents had a farm and all around the farm there were rows and rows of corn. My brothers and I knew that we shouldn’t go into the corn, but that day we couldn’t find the cat. We looked around for the cat and decided he went into the cornfield. Out of curiosity, we came to the decision that we should follow the cat into the cornfield.

When we got in there, we were not scared at first, because it was sunny out. We thought we knew the way out of the cornfield, because we were only walking straight into it. “Do you see the cat?” I asked my brothers. They replied, “No, let’s try looking over there.” So naturally, we weren’t walking in a straight path anymore, but we were confident that we could find our way out again. When you are young, you are usually pretty confident you are right about stuff, so we just kept trying to find the cat. After a while, my brothers and I began to wonder where we go now. We settled upon the idea that we could go home and that we would get there easily. Boy, were we wrong. As it became more and more apparent that we were going the wrong way, we began to panic. The sun appeared to be dimmer and the corn suddenly looked dangerous. The cornstalks were brittle and made strange noises like crackles every now and then. The noise was so sudden; it scared you every time it happened. The fear smelled like decaying corn husks. The sound of your brother’s breathing was fast and shallow. The cornstalks sounded like many people whispering. The cornstalks looked like they were doing a tribal ritual the way the wind was swaying them. We were terrified. We had no idea which way to go. It was like a never ending maze.

As we rushed quickly to get out of the corn, we soon heard the sound of cars going by. It was like the sun had popped up in the gloomiest day and we were finally going to get out of the corn. We stopped to listen to make sure we were going in the direction of the moving cars. After what seemed like an extremely long time, we finally made it to the road. We were all filled with relief. When we got to the road, we were all thinking, “Now what do we do?” because we were young and didn’t know what to do in a situation like the one we were in. As my brothers and I just stood there, a little old lady pulled over to the side of the road and asked us, “Are you guys lost?” We said yes and so she asked us where we live. We didn’t really know, but we thought that if we go a little to our right we would see the windmill that was on the farm. So she slowly drove by us, as we walked a ways. Just when we thought that we were never going home, we saw the windmill.

“There it is!” we exclaimed. Sure enough, when we got to the road we could see our foster mom and the dog running to the end of the road to see if we were there. We were crying, because we were so happy to see her. It was like walking in the dark for hours on end not expecting to see light. Suddenly, there it is and you know everything is going to be alright. Our foster mom asked us, “Where have you been?” We replied, “We were trying to find the cat in the cornfield and we got lost.” From then on, we knew better than to go into the cornfield by ourselves and not tell anyone where we were going.

Getting lost in the cornfield was terrifying then, but it is almost scarier now that I am older. It is frightening now, because I realize all the danger we were in and how much more that danger could increase if the situation had been different. When you are young, you don’t understand some concepts, like “stranger danger” and what to do when you get lost, and it doesn’t hit you until you are older. That is why, when my brothers and I got lost in a cornfield, I think that was the first time I was truly afraid.

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.

Parkland Book