Auburn Meadow Farm

A modern heritage foodstead

oh sad day…


Sometimes I wonder if I’m creating a fiction here. A fairy tale written with extra helpings of happy, interesting and perky and stingy with the dark, melancholy and gritty.

If so, I don’t mean to.  It’s just that I’m eager to share things I like, and tend to pass on dwelling on the things that make me cry. I’m kind of normal that way…

Hannah Banana died this week. She gave no real warning, but it was looming. She is almost twenty and has been losing her bloom,  so I’ve been kind of bracing myself for the inevitable for a while.

Still, I wasn’t ready.

Ho, ho, ho.

As always, I find solace in a brisk walk outside, doing farm chores and reading the contemporary Thomas Moore.

In his book The Education of the Heart, he says this:

“No mysteries are more profound and confounding than loss, suffering, ending, illness, and death. The death of someone close reminds us of what is important and may give us back our soul, but still the cruelties of life seem senseless. They tarnish our optimism and challenge our faith, and yet, oddly, they retain the power to make us ever more human. They do so only when we give them attention and speak for, ritualize, and keep in memory events that hurt, confuse, and keep us in the dark.”


He also shared this poem from Mary Oliver, “In Blackwater Woods”


To live in this world


You must be able

to do three things:

to love what is mortal;

to hold it


against your bones knowing

your own life depends on it;

and, when the time comes to let it go,

to let it go.


Speaks for me perfectly – I let go, though it’s not what I want to do.

Goodbye Mrs. B,  you’ll always be Head Cow to me…



You haven’t met Hannah? Click here to find out why we should all try to be a little more like her. 


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15 comments on “oh sad day…

  1. laura h
    December 24, 2012

    Aww, I’m sorry. :(

    • Auburn Meadow Farm
      December 25, 2012

      Thanks Laura, me too. Thanks for the kind words. Still feeling kind of crappy about it…

  2. Laura Merrifield
    December 24, 2012

    Awe, even though you know it’s coming doesn’t make it any easier. Sorry she is gone.

  3. Tammy
    December 25, 2012

    I’m so sorry Jackie!

  4. lynn
    December 25, 2012

    Although I’ve been reading this wonderful blog for about a year now, this is my very first post. It’s time… and It feels only right to say how grateful we are to have Hanna’s daughter Ruby, and grandchildren, Rose and Sweet William here on our farm. We never met Hanna but feel as though we know her and are forever thankful to you Jackie for sharing part of her legacy with us. We all share in your sadness.

    • Auburn Meadow Farm
      December 25, 2012

      Thanks Lynn. We are kind of sisters-in-cow, lol.

      Ruby is the only cow I’ve sold and while I’ve missed her, I have never spent one micro-minute wondering if she was happy or well cared for. No cows have ever been better cared for than your herd, mine included.

      Hannah and Ruby were tightly bonded and Hannah did give me the cold shoulder for a couple of weeks after Ruby left, until she decided to adopt Femme.

      Why Femme I’ll never know – she’s pastured with her mother Molly. But Femme, and then Femme’s daughter Fanny formed a special bond with Hannah too…

      The old girl left some big hooves to fill…

      • lynn
        December 25, 2012

        Ruby stood like a statue this Christmas morning while I milked her. She munched and savored very slowly on apples, beets and pumpkin… as if contemplating something bigger and more important than her meal….. and I don’t think I ever saw her do that before. lol

        Yes, definitely sisters! You can count on me.

      • Auburn Meadow Farm
        December 25, 2012

        Interesting. Ruby is anything but a contemplative eater, lol. More the greedy wolfing type, lol.

  5. oxhilldevons
    December 25, 2012

    I am very sorry for your loss Jackie. Loosing an animal is always hard.

    • Auburn Meadow Farm
      December 26, 2012

      Thanks Andrew. You’re so right :)

      • matronofhusbandry
        December 27, 2012

        Jackie, it’s never easy to lose an old trooper, even though we know the ending before the first chapter is written :(

      • Auburn Meadow Farm
        December 28, 2012

        So true, and as it should be. Otherwise, you’re not worthy of caring for them… Thanks for the kind words.

      • Auburn Meadow Farm
        December 29, 2012

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