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

Apifera Farm is a registered 501 [c][3]. All images ar©Katherine Dunn.

Sunday, September 04, 2016

The mystery of Apifera begins

I am beginning to return to the living, versus seeing faces of the past. The move was tumultuous to me, I underestimated its impact. I even have had anger and I wasn't sure exactly what I was angry about. I realized over time that I had suffered the loss of one dream, and also suffered the loss of something Martyn and I built together-the place we called Apifera. I thought Apifera would simply come with us to Maine, as it was, and we would start where we left off. But the old farm is not Apifera anymore, it will never exist the way it did when we lived there. I liken it to Brigadoon, a place that only existed every 100 years for one day, and if anyone in the town left, it would cease to exist forever.

But as I wrote once before, Apifera is not as a much a place, as it is my intention in this world. Apifera is me trying to put my best parts out into the realms-through art, service and words.

We have had a lot of loss of late. Huck's death was huge. But, as strange as it sounds, it somehow released me from some thoughts I was stuck in. I had to let those thoughts go before I could feel my land feet again. I had to acknowledge exactly what I was letting go of, which meant digging into that anger and realizing what it was. At first I thought I was angry because we moved-could it have all been a mistake, I thought? Had I convinced myself that all the strings that had to be cut and loose ends that had to be tied to get us here were just...by chance...and had nothing to do with my muses pulling us here?

I had to walk through it. I wasn't angry because we moved, I was angry because I had to acknowledge that Apifera will never be what it was in Oregon. Ever. It's gone. Cats aren't falling from trees here, roosters have not wandered on my property after I invited them on a chance introduction, there is not a clan of cats to care for, the barn is not old and The Head Troll is now semi retired.

I told Martyn this the other night, that the word that described the old Apifera, for me, was magic. But I asked him what he thought the word to describe the new Apifera was.

"I think it is still magic," he said.

I told him I thought the new word might be mystery.

Mystery is magic, he surmised.

The thing is, all these faces I show you today–the White Dog, the smiles of a llama and an old goat, the calm of the sheep–they are helping me create the mystery of the new Apifera. The old one was magnificent and took years to build, so the new one is forming. We don't know the exact form it will take. But that is the beauty of the mystery-our imaginations will be exercised and surprises await around every corner-perhaps even a cat falling out of a tree into my arms.


Ms. Becky said...

When I learned you were selling and moving across country I was horrified, that you would put your animals through such trauma. I know how horrible it is for humans alone to move, never mind the animals. I'm watching your new life unfold, and am hoping that all will settle soon and everyone will have adjusted. It takes time. Everything takes time. I realized that I needed to be more open-minded, and just let it happen. Life does go on, no matter where we are, it goes on....

Terra Hangen said...

Oh sweetie, I can see how some shock and anger surprised you and set in. It is a huge change but Martyn is right, your new home has a magic too. Your dear animals look quite content there. I am glad you are seeing the mystery and the magic.

Lisa Hofmann said...

Such wisdom here Katherine. Hard earned, I can imagine. Any move is huge but a farm? Especially amid some immense losses (Stevie, Mama Sugee ... now Huck) yet it makes sense that in some way you are being stripped clean because if the new Apifera is to emerge, any comparison to the old would be limiting the possibilities. Perhaps, in a way, the grief and anger is distracting you so you won't get in the way of what is patiently waiting to set roots and slowly unfurl? Seems like Itty Bitty's message is woven into this new Apifera ... xoxo

Katherine Dunn said...

Ms. Becky- I put a huge amount of thought into the move, and had my vets look at everyone I had concerns with. I left my beloved flock behind and some others that I know were not meant to come, that it was best for them to stay on the land they knew. That was a very hard decision. I am not sure what part of all of it "horrified" you the most, but these animals are well cared for, and their move went off very smoothly-because I put so much effort, time, and yes-money-into it. They are very happy here and have everything they need. This post was about my feelings-you know me, I'm the human component?

Katherine Dunn said...

Thanks, Terra, for all your comments. You are right, the animals took it in stride and are very happy! And each day new wonderful things emerrge. I just think people need to see both sides of such a transition...it is all part of taking risks and leaping, right?

Katherine Dunn said...

Lisa, you know I agree. When Stevie died, and that year there were some really sad goodbyes, Aldo i think, anyway, I remember we hadn't decided to move, and it was just a tiny germ that we were almost afraid to address at that time-because of all that it would mean [including more goodbyes]but i remember as I was there with Stevie's body, I had these voices and thoughts of this, that layers were being peeled away to help us, help me.

mama bear said...

I think, Katherine, any monumental change takes enormous courage. Though I've not experienced this life-changing event as you have, I think we can understand the questions and, yes, the anger felt. You are brave to recreate your life. You and Martyn know what's best for your lives and the precious souls you mend and care for. I know I'm not alone in honoring your life's work. Blessings, dear ones.

Katherine Dunn said...

thank you mama bear!

Post a Comment

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