Monday, March 27, 2006
A proper place for little souls
Today was the first real spring day, the kind of day that makes gardeners get twitterpated. The kind of day that makes you forget it ever rained. I could actually hear things growing, really, the grass makes this sound when it grows - at least the grass on Apifera Farm does. Huck and I drove into town to pick up feed, and on the way home I couldn't resist stopping at one of our local small nurseries and buying some more honeysuckle, and chatting up with the two owners. Just seeing the plants and feeling the warmth of the sun made me change my plans for the day. Painting could wait until tonight - 65 degrees and sun were my muses today.
I indulged in working in the garden, and got all wrapped up into re-configuring my entrance to the Apifera Farm Small Rodent and Bird Cemetery. I'm quite pleased with myself, and even though my stone work is always crude, it brings me pleasure. I laid some old split rail that we brought up from the cow pasture, and created a series of 'rooms', one area for sitting near the cemetery. So now one can sit and visit with all the little souls buried there. And later in spring or summer, I will be able to expand the burial area. As I lay the split rails out in square rooms, it reminded me of being little and how we would make rooms out of leaves, piling them up to create walls. It was magical then, and it was magical today.
I must say, I do spend quite a bit of energy and time on that cemetery. I chose to hand paint the headstones and varnished them for protection. But each year I have to repaint them. I wish I knew how to etch in stone - but goodness, this would be a little time consuming. "Oh sorry, I don't have time to do a gallery show this month, I am busy etching bird tombstones..." Still, the quite of working under the two Redwoods while I care take the little cemetery is very soothing.
We had a wonderful weekend combining a lot of work [including hanging the door to our vegetable area which is now protected with deer fence] with a pleasant meandering journey over to a nearby Mossback Farm, owned by a couple we met recently. Val and Rich are so kind and gentle, very informative, from diverse/creative backgrounds and very busy reworking their farm to be more fertile and productive. They used to raise meat chickens, but cut back for a million reasons [their blog is very informative about agriculture and small farm issues] They have some sheep and a cow or two and are doing all this without any out buildings or fencing - they use temporary electric fence allowing them to rotate pasture. It was so good for us to visit another couple on our playing level, so to speak, doing the work bit by bit themselves, on a shoestring I assume, as we are, but enjoying it, and believing that they are making a difference for the land. I really felt good stuff going on there. It made me love our farm even more as we drove back home, and I heard the familiar sound of the driveway gravel under our car, and heard the sheep bleat and saw a swish of a palomino running up the hill to our barn. Home.