BASTION MOUNTAIN RANCH - TALES OF A FARM FAMILY


My family lived on a Ranch full time from 1993 until 2015. We were a 5th generation family farm.
I am writing this blog to share my experiences living there. It is best to read the blog chronologically by going through the archives, starting with the introduction in January of 2010.
The blog starts with the arrival of my great-grandparents to the farm in 1947 and will follow the families to the present.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Buggy Highway

I have started to walk again on the farm, although I won't yet go alone on the public road where I feel too vulnerable and exposed to what I perceive as not a very friendly place.  My first walk was on Buggy Highway which was made in the early 1930s to connect the two pioneer farms together; the farm that was located on Canoe Point with the Ferme Fleur-de-Lys. The path now follows along a rough pasture, but in the 1930s it was a narrow track through thick bush.
On that walk I started to think of all the other landmarks on the farm and the names associated with them; Bear Lookout, the top of the Big Hill, The Secret Field, the Gravel Pit, the Lean To, Broken Thumb Hill.  The names of these places are like a secret code, with only a select few people knowing where they are. In the next few months I will visit all of these places. It is a process of reclamation of what I thought was lost.

Buggy Highway, September 2012


I followed in the path of my bovine friends,
where the fence was down, twisted and broken.
Somehow seeing that gave me permission, where they went,
I went too.
Everywhere there were signs of their passage, the grass down close
to the earth.
Manure, dried and grey.
A true comfort to find myself in the field,
To remember what I love.
Right up to the top of the hill where everything below lay gently,
barns, all the grass and the thrilling green of the trees.
How could I have let the fence stop me for all these months?
The cows knew better, and now I do too.
Feet follow soul.
Around the rocks that my father lay for his mother’s ashes, and then his own.
Will I be buried there?
Behind the wall of trees that have grown thick around this burial ground.
My friends do not go there.
That fence would be better down as well, to allow the animals to trim and prune.
Liberate the view that my father so loved.
No, I decide at that moment. Not below the stones on the top of this hill.
This place is for wandering, breathing, a prayer.
This place is for life.



I followed in the path of my bovine friends.


Right up to the top of the hill where everything below lay gently.

Around the rocks that my father lay for his mother's ashes, and then his own.

Beyond the wall of trees that have grown thick around his burial ground.

This place is for wandering, breathing, a prayer.

This place is for life.