April 23, 2008
Brother Tractor had put five orphan lambs together in a stall in the old part of the barn. Sometimes I'd find them asleep, piled on each other just like a litter of kittens. Other times, they'd run over to me, bleating. The biggest one kept jumping over the low wooden fence into the outer stall. Brother Curly Beard nicknamed him Houblon. I offered to hold Houblon while he was trying to feed two of the other babies. Newborn lambs are amazingly strong and sturdy, and he wriggled in my arms the way a human toddler would. He smelled like the barn: hay and manure and wool. His warm woolly body felt rougher than I expected, and he kept nuzzling my neck and my shirt, looking for anyplace he could suck. When Brother Tractor handed me a bottle for Houblon, I offered it to the lamb, and he sucked four ounces of milk down in just a few gulps.
Posted by jo(e)