Saturday, 24 December 2011
At the farm, dinner cooling on the stove, the kid asleep in bed, The Boy out in the paddocks, hunting. I am sitting on the back porch, knitting a little beanie for baby G, watching the wind shear through the long, long grass and listening to the birds catching bugs in the warm evening light. One shot. The dog sits up at my feet. The baby doesn't stir.
He was so long coming back that I thought he must have missed. But when he did silently appear at the house paddock fence, still in stealth mode, he had the gun in one hand and in the other, a rabbit.
He skinned it, and gutted it, and while I have to steal myself to eat the meat on my plate, there was nothing gruesome about this process. It was clean and quiet and anatomically interesting. It was a beautiful rabbit, but I could appreciate its loveliness and its death without moral turbulence.
Yesterday I put it in our blue pot, with carrots and onions and potatoes and pancetta, and the stew waits now in our fridge for the end of the Christmas feasting.
This is the kind of meat I can eat, with gratitude and grace.