White Flint Farm

It’s cold and rainy.  A good time of year to be lazy.

The deer, having lost any fear of the deer fences, trampled them down and ate up all the broccoli and kale.  They haven’t finished off the mustard greens yet, but they’re working on it.

Every year the deer population here grows larger, despite the dozens of deer hunters who seem to be out every day.  I see deer here on our farm every day.  I still haven’t finished eating the one we put in the freezer last year, but I’ll probably try to put up another one before the end of the season.  We don’t buy any meat now.  Cherie is a vegetarian and I have all the pork, chicken and venison I could possibly eat.

One of our hens went broody and made a nest in the hay in our equipment shed.  She recently hatched nine chicks. 

The last three chicks that were hatched here all turned out to be roosters.  Now they’ve matured, and they’re a menace to our hens.  One of them received a stay of execution by the bad weather this morning.  I just didn’t feel like plucking a chicken in the rain. 

Sadly I discovered that all the bees in our remaining hive have died.  Regular readers will recall that one of our hives flew away earlier this year after wax moths invaded.  Now we have no bees and therefore no honey.  I don’t know what happened to the girls.  I suspect a stronger hive may have stolen all their honey.   There was evidence of wax moths and it was just a weak hive.   I’m angry at myself for not noticing the problem before it was too late.  But I’d checked on them frequently and everything seemed fine.  Still, I suspect this wouldn’t have happened to a better beekeeper.

Cherie and I are at a crossroad in our lives.  With the kids now both off at college, its time for us to figure out what we’re going to do with ourselves now that we’re grown up.

We’re anticipating some major, exciting developments for White Flint and for ourselves.

So those are just some random thoughts and observations on a cold rainy afternoon.

A good afternoon for a nap.

Love Wins

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Practicing Resurrection

I’m back, with a new name and a new look.  I lack the computer skills necessary to really jazz this site up, so I don’t know how to install a more attractive theme.  I’d love any comments or suggestions for improvements.

Obviously I’ve stolen the new blog name from a wonderful poem by Wendell Berry, reproduced below.  I very rarely have an original thought.

I plan to blog about once a week with news of happenings on the farm.  The rest of the time I’ll probably just pass along things I find interesting.  I plan to stay away from politics entirely, but will probably offer some of my anarcho-hippie-christian-agrarian philosophy and theology from time to time.  For any who are interested, I’ve blogged some about Christmas over on the Sustainable Traditions site (as have others):  http://sustainabletraditions.ning.com/

And now, Mr. Berry:

Manifesto:  The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more
of everything ready-made. Be afraid
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know.
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord.
Love the world. Work for nothing.
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it.
Denounce the government and embrace
the flag. Hope to live in that free
republic for which it stands.
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers.
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.
Say that the leaves are harvested
when they have rotted into the mold.

Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion – put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come.
Expect the end of the world. Laugh.
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts.
So long as women do not go cheap
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep
of a woman near to giving birth?
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head
in her lap. Swear allegiance
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos
can predict the motions of your mind,
lose it. Leave it as a sign
to mark the false trail, the way
you didn’t go. Be like the fox
who makes more tracks than necessary,
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Love Wins