Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

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©Katherine Dunn.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

He sleeps under stars

I awoke on Saturday morning with the same feeling I remember as a child when I knew it was Christmas morning. It is nice to know that through one's life, the same feeling of anticipation can make one get out of bed with a hop and skip. Only this time the present would come to me slowly, as he walked down the gravel road from about 2 miles from our farm up Mt. Richmond. I knew the great package would arrive sometime in the afternoon, which was perfect, as it allowed us to get field work done do barn chores. But as the afternoon wore on, and 2 turned to 3 turned to 4, I had another feeling I remember as a child - fear that Christmas would really never come, or that somehow I would not get what I wanted. I went up to the house at 4 and checked messages - there were non indicating the package deliverers had changed their plans. I was tired from the field work and sun, so lay down to rest in the fan's breeze - but every few minutes I would jump, sure that I heard unusual sounds coming up the driveway. At about 5, Martyn and I sat in the shade and it was then we heard a clip, then a clop, in a slow rhythmic pattern coming up our gravel drive. It was at this precise moment that Pino Blangeforti entered my life, and both our lives are destined to change. For from this day forward, I will have yet another wonderful thing to do with freshly picked daisies - for what face is not just slightly more lovely than when framed in some daisies?

Pino Blangeforti's ancestors hail from Sicily, and his Mediterranean tastes are apparent. He relishes thorny weeds and is not jaded by hot and dry conditions. On his first full night with us, he calmly walked his pasture, and ran the fence line just as he should when he heard strange dogs barking. He had a sky of stars that he chose to sleep under, and he brayed at 2 am, and 4 am, and then again at dawn - and each time I heard it, I couldn't wait for morning to see him again. When I greeted him around 7, he smelled a bit skunky, and I praised him for keeping the skunk form entering the barn. Today after working with Sky all morning, I took Pino Blangiforti for a long walk down the road where we stopped often to admire the wind in weeds, and he tasted his new surroundings. We returned to watch Martyn working on the old barn, and sat in shade where Pino leaned on me and fell asleep standing as I brushed him.

Being a loyal creature by nature, I love my husband and am committed to him and always will be. But I must admit this, both to myself and now you, kind readers - I am also in love with a donkey.