Friday, January 4, 2013

the calving kid's lament

I wrote this one several years ago. This is an almost-true-account of one calving season when I was in High School. It was when my littlest brother and I were the last kids left at home and I had some suspicions, like many siblings those ages, about the favoritism my parent's showed. 

It was a regular calving season night and dad went out to check the cows. 
Within 30 minutes he came a runnin' and a yellin' back into the house.
"The milk cow just dropped a still born and I don't know about that heifer '75.'
Grab your coats and overalls we all gotta go if we're gonna make these ones survive."
I rolled one foot out and thought aloud "You're used to this. Wake up, it can't take too long." 
By the time I got outside though, Dad and mom were already driving fast in the pickup, long gone.  
It was then that I realized I'd just have to go back to bed. Awww what a bummer.
I shoulda' known not to get my hopes up, soon I was awoke from my slumber.
It was just when I was reachin' the deep part of sleep when I heard over the CB 
"Hey there, do ya hear me? We need you over here in a real bad way, leave immediately!"
Back outta bed and stumblin' around. I put my  layers of coats and Carhartts back on.
I ran out the door but the driveway was empty, so I took the feed truck since the pickup was gone. 
I slipped the clutch at least once or twice but over at the calvin' shed I finally arrive.
I slammed the door as I charged in. I didn't know what they were stressin', everything was alive.
"Drench this calf!" "Suckle this pair" "Come clean up this one's navel."
"There's some real good scour pills right over there on the table."
And so on through the night it went I soon realized no rest would be my fate. 
Then little Sterling, my brother, came shufflin' in, real slow right through the gate.
He said it in such an innocent way, "Hey guys what's up? What's with all the fuss?"
In his flannel pajamas and confused look on his face, he stood there starin' at us.
I didn't mean to, but out of my mouth came some shouts 
"Ya little putz come help us out! I don't believe you were still sleepin!"
I grabbed his shoulder and pointed the scour pills out 
"We've been workin' so hard without a stop and you have the nerve to creep in.
Well Mama heard my hurtful words and put in her 2 cents "I've had enough of you!"
I was taken back but she went on "Come on Dave and son let's go she'll do our work too." 
There in the dark I had some time to digress on everything that'd went on.
As I doctored calves, milked a wild cow and for their help, pitifully longed.
I thought the words I said weren't too awful bad but man, my mama blew. 
That night I learned my lesson, when calvin' don't tease the favorite member of the crew!

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