Wednesday, June 20, 2012
For all the backaches and isolation of working a farm and working for ourselves, there are plenty of moments we’d miss if we had a "real job."
In this case, the doe and tiny fawn entered the pasture through the side that has wooden, three-rail fencing. They tried to cross over another stretch that's all sheep fencing. The doe hopped over. The fawn could not and jogged up and down the fence line, trying to find a way. After some 30 minutes and with the fawn seeming more and more frantic, the doe hopped back into the pasture and they both ran back whence they came.
It brought to mind a fabulous poem, written by my dad, Sam Butcher:
Jumping the fence
Five strands of barbed wire separate
the alfalfa from the willow thickets,
where the fawns are born.
In July, when doe and fawn rush
to safety in the willows,
the doe clears the fence in a bound
while fawn scoots under
the bottom wire as quickly as a cat.
By spring all deer jump the fence.
Imagine the calculus done before
the young deer jumps the fence:
the top strand no longer seems so high,
but the barbs must become very sharp,
and the old way still serves.
Think of that first time the deer lifts its head,
drives powerful hind legs, points nose to sky,
and never looks back.