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

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©Katherine Dunn.

Thursday, June 01, 2023

Mrs. Dunn falls in a hole

 “Mrs. Dunn fell in a hole!!!” screamed Hannah as she ran through the barn.

I could hear the feet of small goats rushing about, as I lay on my side...in a hole.

I suddenly felt a nose near mine, as I lay there making sure all my parts still worked. It was the nose of Earnest the pig.

Mrs. Dunn, are you alright?” he asked.

Somewhat,” I said.

The entire herd of goats was around me, including Ollie, the largest goat and also the one who helped get me in this position.

Mrs. Dunn, why are you lying in a hole?!” said Ollie.

I am in a hole because you twirled around me and made me fall into this hole,” I said.

Marcella, the Head Mistress, the Maremma guardian dog who watches after the herd, came over to me. We are a team in the barnyard and she has been with us since birth and is now 9 years old.

Marcella, you made this hole, I know you did and I’m now the victim of it,” I said.

I had very good reason to make the hole,” she said. “Actually, two reasons: rats, and a skunk.”

The large rubber mats in the barn stall lay on top of dirt, and under the dirt down deep are the myriad of tunnels where the rats run, and other critters. Marcella is a Maremma and you can not get anything by her. If there is anything running under those floors she will dig, and dig. I pity those she finds.

I had walked into the stall and as I put my foot down, it sank, into an abyss. At that very moment, Ollie and his 250# body encircled me-a goat trait employed to ensure he will get food. The buckets I was holding went flying, my bum went down and there I was, lying in a hole, surrounded by the perplexed faces of goats and dogs. Their perplexed expressions were not of concern for me, rather they just wondered why the usual routine of me walking into the stall -upright- had changed this morning.

But Mrs. Dunn, you must get up, it’s our breakfast. There’s no time to lay about in a hole!” said Ollie.

I will get up in due time!” I snapped.

What is “dotime?” asked little Hannah.

It means that she will rise up when she feels she is emotionally and physically capable,” said Earnest the pig.

Poor Mrs. Dunn,” and she put her forehead into mine.

It’s okay, Hannah. Falling is hard when your body gets a bit….”

Ancient?” snapped Poetry the old goat. “Tell me about it. Just wait until your my age,” the old goat quipped.

How old is ancient?” asked hannah.

Hundreds of years,” said Pickles.

Are you hundreds of years, Mrs. Dunn?” asked Hannah.

Somedays, I think,” I said.

You should be in National Geographic, Mrs. Dunn! You’re almost as old as that giant tortoise we read about!” said Puddles the goat.

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