Thursday, April 26, 2007

One of the more interesting, and even enlightening, things about living this agrarianish life is seeing the reality behind so many metaphors. The first time it happened, I was watching our goats eating. Goats, don't graze like cows, they browse - a little of this, a bite of that, a nibble here, a taste there. It was kind of funny thinking of all the times I've used that word while shopping or visiting a library and not realizing that it's actually a metaphor.

I used to think Don't cry over spilt milk meant not to regret the loss of such a little thing, but let me tell you, when we've worked so hard to get that milk, and especially when we only had one doe and the milk was very precious, I must say that I have actually cried over spilt milk.

Did you know that when you cut a chicken's head off, it really flops around like a chicken with its head cut off? Only I can't say it actually "runs around," which is what I always pictured. Running would denote some intent. It just flaps its wings and hops, in a wild, frantic randomness here and there.

I've seen the wanton devastation resulting from letting a fox in the henhouse, and I know the disgusting lechery of a young buck as well as the capricious behaviour of a bunch of capering goats.

But the most recent one is a word I'd rather not have learnt in such a personal fashion: the throes of death. One of our beloved goats died last week, with her head resting silently in Mike's lap, neck strecthing, legs circling slowly, as she strained uselessly in patient agony against the coming death, before taking one last long shuddering breath.

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