Guinea Fowl

La Flem

Jolie

We say thank you
and goodbye
to three of our companions
here on the farm.
Last Saturday,
while graduate students from Oklahoma State University
were touring the farm,
we discovered a guinea fowl,
dead and half-eaten in the barn.
Somebody in the neighborhood
penetrated what we thought
was a safe house,
and had supper.
The barn is now re-secured
and so far
no hungry carnivore
has found its way in again.

Yesterday,
we found La Flem,
the Giant Flemish rabbit,
dead too.
Her death was not from
a barn raider.
And Jolie, another of the rabbits
in the village,
was sick as well.
She died last night,
in spite of Ann’s tender care.
We now believe
that the beautiful green grass
that we have showered on them
is the cause.
They couldn’t handle such a lush
change in diet.
We now know
we should have given them
little helpings of green grass
to help their stomachs
adjust.
We mourn.
And Bella,
the little Dutch girl,
sits alone in the rabbit village,
at the opening to one of the tunnels,
and seems to be missing her friends.
We will find her a village-mate soon.

These three have not finished
contributing their lives,
however.
(Warning: The following
may be a bit gruesome
to some.)
We had to decide
whether to bury their bodies
or offer them to the two pigs
who are living here at the moment
to root up plants where we are expanding
the garden.
Pigs are herbivores and carnivores,
like us.
No matter what we decided,
the guinea fowl and rabbits
would continue the cycle of life.
We chose to share them with the pigs,
and so,
the guinea fowl,
La Flem and Jolie
will continue to be present in the garden,
sustaining life.