I went out across the road to check on the new sheep in the meadow, and I thought, turning around and looking at our beautiful farm, meadows and pastures, fences and brushogged, the restored and wondrous barns, the spacious farmhouse, I love this farm so much, I will never live in such a beautiful and comfortable space again. I know it, and Maria knows it.
This farmhouse and grounds fits both of us like a glove. Maria has her studio, an upstairs office, the Pig Barn Gallery. We eat on a screened in porch looking down over out beautiful valley. George Forss, visiting the other day, was incredulous that I would even think of leaving such a wonderful place. I write on the porch, have a small office, a guest bedroom for naps of Ipod listening, bathrooms and barnwood family rooms. It will be a wrench to give many of those things up, yet the curious thing is that I have no doubts about giving it up, and neither does Maria.
Bedlam Farm was for another time, a different time. In my work, in the world, in my life. I already love the new place too and haven't even lived there. I love the idea of Maria and I making our own place, shaping it together. I love the town we are moving near. I know the farm will be sold soon – I can feel it in my bones – and I want to acknowledge the sadness and pull of leaving this home. I don't want to pretend I won't feel it, and deeply. I mourn it already. I wrote eight books here and took a million photographs. I can't go a dozen feet without seeing something to photograph.
For the time in my life, Bedlam Farm was a challenge and paradise and a caution for me, all of those things. It is time for us to move forward, I know that too. But today, looking out at the sheep grazing in their meadow as the sun set, I bowed my head. Let the loss flow through me, I let. Feel it. I needed to tell the farm that I loved it, and value it.