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

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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Old man conversation



I took these pictures this morning of my Old Man. He has started going out to the older barn in the morning and resting in a private doorway nook near one of the stalls. It provides him privacy, but with the sounds of nearby sheep and visiting chickens.

I didn't think too much of this in the past couple days, it is after all a place where many of the barnyard will congregate for shelter. It's about a 3"x 2" space and I can understand the temptation to snuggle down in the leftover hay to ponder the taste of chewed cud. Eggs are laid there, old geese have napped there.

But I had a conversation with Old Man Guinnias this morning. The cold rains have come today and he seemed a bit different. I do believe that certain animals hang on longer out of an unwritten code of ethics and I told him he could go anytime he needs to. It is selfish of me at this stage not share that with him. The day after we lost Honey Boy and Granny, I talked to Guinnias and I said, "You just keep on walkin' for me..." It's up to him and his body now, and he might just have a picture of spring in his mind, I don't know. All the animals here are loved and are unique, but Old Man Guinnias has a special place, as first old goat, and hanger on at 18.

When I photographed him today, I couldn't help but wonder if he placed himself in that private nook to entice me over, to take a fitting portrait of him - showing his most dignified, beautiful aged face.

Old Man Guinnias is one of the many old goats Apifera has adopted from New Moon Goat Farm/Rescue.

8 comments:

Jody said...

I do love your old man, and you are so brave and kind to let him know how you feel. Please pat his head one time for me.

purple bird art said...

One night last year, my old dog, who was slowly dying of a heart defect, came to me and put his head in my lap and would not move. And eventually I realized it was his time. I rubbed him and petted him in all his favorite spots and told him how honored I was that he had shared his life with me and how much I loved him. I asked him to find my husband and keep him company on while he fished the great lakes of the beyond. I told him I understood he had to go but that he would always be in my heart. He died that night, sometime after I could not keep my eyes open any longer. I found him in the morning. He died doing what he loved best...stealing the cat's food on top of the window seat. I will be forever grateful for having the opportunity to say goodbye...

Lis said...

It is a special gift to be so attuned to another ... and to receive the messages of these beautiful beings. That last image and the look in his eye? a wisdom beyond human language.

sending both of you warm thoughts ...

Laura Tringali Holmes said...

Found my way here via Carole Reid's blog. Enjoying your writings. So very sorry to read about your recent sorrows.

denise f said...

Old Man, you will know when it is time. And Katherine will help you...

denise f said...

And now why am I crying?

Deborah Weber said...

What a beautiful old soul and what lovely photographs that capture that.

Nikki said...

I said this to my cat when he was very frail and old, he died a little later that day... strange how we always know when the time is coming... we let go... love your blog...

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Thank you for reading! The farm and my art/writing keep me hopping, so might not respond immediately. Thank you for understanding. ~Katherine & Apifera ~