Friday, December 16, 2011


Crack of Dawn has me out in full gear. Hat, scarf, two sweaters, down vest, canvas overcoat, two pants layers, boots, gloves. Gray light in a frozen world. Captain Jack is standing. The chickens are still on their roosting poles. Silence is broken as roosters crow and Jack begins to call immediately, running around the garden looking for his love.
Tinkerbelle is at the door, her head hanging through the hole she pushed into the chicken wire yesterday. I push her head back inside to open the door. The herd runs out, not immediately interested in Jack who has not quite figured out where everyone else lives. I have some moments of relief when Tinkerbelle comes to eat alfalfa and lick at the salt. Maybe the craze of heat is over for her and I can relax. Maybe. I leave Jack alone on one side of the fence and let the rest of the herd eat. I watch for a time then go inside to have a cup of chai and write before the sun comes out.
Luna on the outside.
This will be the rhythm of the days with Jack. Vigilant watchfulness. I return to the pen after a scant hour. Luna is outside the pen. Luna was born this last february, the daughter of Latifa. I found her outside the pen last night when I went to close everyone up for the evening. I do not know how she is doing this. No doubt about it, having a buck around is creating havoc with the herd. Randomness and chaos. I still cling to some hope that Tinkerbelle has lost the ardent fever. She really is the sweetest of all the does. I have thought if she had a kid it would be the easiest to be around. All of my does are friendly, but Tinkerbelle stands out.

Everyone has eaten. Jack is on the far side of the fence calling, pacing, stepping up onto the fencing. Is it possible he will push it down? After leading Luna to the inside of the fencing I find she has crawled under the gate leading to the garden. I find this only because Mr. Peanut and Mocha have their heads underneath this gate trying to follow in Luna's path. I can just hear her. "Hey guys, it's easy! Just wiggle underneath." They hadn't figured this out before Jack was on the scene.  I am thankful Luna is the smallest and the others can't  follow her. More kluging of boards and this escape route is blocked. I put Latifa and Flora in with Jack. He follows them with the ardor he feels for Tinkerbelle, hoping. They'll have nothing to do with him. Bobbie tells me that goat heat cycles often go with the full moon, 6 days ago. This means I'll have Jack through January. Oh joy. Bobbie tells me he is going out of rut and his scent is not as strong as when he is in full rut. "He'll make your eyes water," she says. I tell my son Eric. "My eyes water now. His smell is revolting," he says.

I take my position watching the fence line for a while. Jack and Tinkerbelle are crazy for each other. I am probably making a colossal mistake by leaving Tinkerbelle with only a six foot fence between her and Jack. I must have some insanity in my hope that I will not have to lock her up in the goat barn. But maybe for the sake of both of them (and myself) I will end up doing that. I suspect that my ignorance in the matters of Buck are grand. I will paraphrase from My Fair Lady: "Let a buck in your life and your serenity is through." But life is not dull.

1 comment:

  1. Fascinating! Wish I was there ... errr ... except for the perfume part.