April on the Farm

It was supposed to rain this afternoon, but it didn't. After a night of heavy rain and overflowing creeks this morning, the sun began to appear now and then and by afternoon it shared the sky with lofty cumulus clouds speeding above my world. So Roy (my border collie) & I sorted out the few ewes that have yet to lamb from the young ewes that will not lamb this year. We added to them the ram and two ewes who lost both of their lambs this season and called them all up the hay field to where I let them through the gate into what we call the “top field”. I then did the same with the thirty mothers and their lambs in the south hollow letting them directly into the top field. They all eagerly set to work eating the lush new spring grass...



Returning to the barn I picked up a salt bucket and walked back through the hayfield and to the upper end of the top field. It is the “Sound of Music” spot on my farm. A warm but brisk wind was blowing through the green tipped trees to the south of the field and all around the ewes were purposefully munching the spring-green grass followed by their lambs. My border collie Roy was lying down but intensely watching the sheep. Our two big white Great Pyranees guard dogs were first frolicking with the energy of the wind and then lying in the grass basking in the sun. A big black and yellow butterfly drifted over my head when I laid down on a large flat rock to watch the clouds sail by. Sitting up to follow with my eyes the cloud shadows slipping down the mountains and out across the valley I said to Roy, “A sheep dog’s paradise, a shepherd’s paradise.”


It is for times like this that I live on this farm. The serendipitous moment that suddenly breaks out around me in the course of going about my ordinary tasks. The “goose-bumps” down my back not from the wind but from being immersed in the sheer beauty and joy of God’s creation!

-Farmer John