Fish, Flies and FIELDing Problems – the Farmer in Armor
The problems started a week ago When Rich and Zeb went fishing To try and start our winter's hoard - But that was hopeful wishing! Richard snagged just a few And Zeb gave us one he caught. And in all the things we've learned here: Cleaning fish in my kitchen - N O T !!!!! The smell that night started making me sick And all next day I was struggling But opening the top half of the Dutch door, Then closing it, freezing, took juggling Between that fresh air method and The burning beeswax - what else was used? Oh, vinegar! So then our house stank Of fish AND the latter-- and I was NOT amused. Three days later, chilly and cold 'Cause the door was open for air But the houseflies, blackflies and horseflies too Were now inside and - we hadn't a prayer! The second the snows melt away in N.B. The blackflies are on us in swarms And these aren't like Ontario ones - They are smaller, and multiply as the air warms... Only the females bite, they say - But boy there are plenty of THOSE! And though we're up high with lots of breeze And with open land - ANYTHING goes They are so small, and NOT very black But the damage they cause is great While trying to mow and harrow the fields Richard's temples and neck were well-ate! And while Mom plants the flowers, and I the veg, We all three must bundle in armor And poor Chevy, too, or he can't go to graze! Ye GADS - the life of a farmer!
So while we MUST be outside during the day, With planting and sowing of seed Mostly Chevy, and Smitty and Cammie too Are INSIDE, where it's more black-fly-freed. But with feeling sick from bug bites and flu, Chevy doesn't want to eat much at all He's on antibiotics, and pain-killers, too SO... he's not happy out OR in stall! And Cammie's twice gotten loose and run out And eaten tomato plants started downstairs Then nurtured along by yours truly... Oh, the problems and woes and cares!!! When they graze in the daylight, they are eaten alive You can see their tails try, but in vain (Especially since draft horse guys cut them SHORT Which gives Chevy MORE of a strain!) So Chevy goes out at night to eat When it's chilly and damp and cold And Cammie bleats from the barn for her pal So there's all kinds of unrest in the fold! And though their summer food is a problem, Their winter food is now our main thought. The field's been prepared with that new harrow And now here we become MUCH over-wrought. For in the long grass the blackflies rest Awaiting the approach of fresh protein That comes with our blood, those bastard swarms! (If only they sucked FAT and made us lean!) So we take turns on the back of the pickup truck Which overheats constantly and stops And we leave it and go on to something else Then come back for more broadcasting crops.
We toss out the timothy into the wind And pray that many seeds 'take' We may only get one hay-cutting this year: But FINE QUALITY, thanks to harrow and rake? However, yesterday, on the tailgate alone, Broadcasting and enjoying the heat ('Twas the first hot day we've had And - less blackflies ? Oh, Gosh- what a treat!) I let my left leg dangle down With pant-leg tucked into sock And my right leg straddled the sack of seed... I was ready with bug-spray, sun-block! (All natural, of course, and may not work as well As the chemical ones from the store, Because, unbeknownst to me, The blackflies were. . . EVENING THE SCORE). Mom and Richard have both had bites All over their bodies and hair But so far, I've had better luck, As I take garlic and dress with great care! But here's my left ankle yesterday: I was oblivious to all this going on As the blackflies anaesthetize first And THEN it's their major blood drawn. You can see where my sock was tight Because my pant leg was tucked in, But apparently this doesn't much help As my hairy legs are bitten heel to shin! And today they are swollen and infected And of course itchy as hell! I reapply soda paste 3 times an hour And curse the Mount of Blue Bell! Yes the view is amazing and lovely And the lilacs and tree blossoms too But this week has been nightmarish for all who live At the farm aptly named as "blue".... And now Chevy's form of black-fly fever May well be setting in to me too But at least MY antibiotics are 'covered' And won't break the bank as HIS do!