Rifle_DuskThe deed is done.  Our pigs have been slaughtered, skinned, hung, and butchered. In their five month reign in the lowlands below the house, they fattened themselves on the pastures and literally tons of fruit from the orchards where I work.  Their flavor is the flavor of our soil. Their flavor is the fruit of the farm where I spend my days.  These pigs ate a thousand plums off of the very tree that we smoked their meat with. Their bones and hide and dung now fertilize those very pastures and those plum trees, and their flesh and their lard will sustain us for the coming year.

Cutting_YesteryearWe are learning how to close the loop a little bit.  We’re learning what the land can handle, what it can’t and ways that we can improve the health of pastures, the happiness of the pigs and the flavor of the pork. And the flavor of the pork, if we do say so ourselves, is indeed approaching sinful. I can understand why swine is against the law in certain circles, after hearing the hedonistic exaltations coming from around the dinner table as we tore into the first batch of ribs, jowl bacon and chorizo.

ButcherBlock_SepiaBut I digress. What I really wanted to discuss today was the existence of the soul. With every bite that we have taken of that delectable swine, we have said the words “Thank you Chulo. You were a good pig. You had a pretty damn good life.” And through our minds run the memories of him wrestling with his brothers, or sleeping in his food bowl, or leaning in hard to our legs as we scratched his back.  We are reminded of these things. And his soul lives on.  He was a good pig.

Hand_Chulo_DuskyWe participated in the Homestead Barn Blog Hop.