Where the Sheep Went (Part 2)

    Early the next morning, the chief rooster’s mighty crow trumpeted from the big white fencepost near the front gate. The animals began to stir. One by one the sheep crept out from the barn and into the chilly air and gentle sunlight. Beneath a clear blue sky, a hundred thousand lingering dewdrops had turned... Continue Reading →

Painting: Balloon Face

When we were kids, my friend Travis Barnell and I used to watch hot air balloons flying and/or floating (I still don’t really know how they work) above the coast near where we lived. They seemed so magical, those airborne rubber orbs (if that’s what they are made of—I never bothered to find out). Travis... Continue Reading →

Why the Donkey Never Runs (Part 10)

Mr McGinley stooped down and tried to catch Henry, but the piglet was too fast. He darted in and out between the donkey's legs, back and forward and around in circles, squealing the whole time. It was only when he tripped and fell that Mr McGinley pounced and caught him, gathering him up in his... Continue Reading →

Why the Donkey Never Runs (Part 9)

"Please," said the Clydesdale, her eyes to the ground. "Samson is my friend. Please, just let him be. Fergus, go back to the henhouse. Winston, please forgive the cattle dog's ignorance." "Forgive me?" said Fergus. "I won't have a chicken lord it over me!" The young hen pecked her head forward at Fergus. She clucked... Continue Reading →

Why the Donkey Never Runs (Part 8)

A blanket covered the donkey from his shoulders to his tail, and in front of him lay a small pile of straw and two carrots, untouched. Henry approached slowly. "Samson? Did you stay here all night? I missed you at the hill this morning." After waiting a silent minute, the piglet wandered around. He inspected... Continue Reading →

Why the Donkey Never Runs (Part 7)

Atop of the hill, Henry sat and finished his apple core and waited. He looked up the paddock, toward the stables; there was no movement at first, but soon the horses wandered out. No donkey. Henry paced back and forth; he took a long, probing look at the willow tree; he turned and looked up... Continue Reading →

Why the Donkey Never Runs (Part 6)

Until Henry jumped in the water, the cattle dog never quite believed his practical joke would succeed. Fergus was a resentful newcomer to Butterberry Farm (Mr McGinley having recently bought him from a neighbour), but now he felt he would enjoy his new home. His jubilation, however, was interrupted by a splash and a gasp... Continue Reading →

Why the Donkey Never Runs (Part 5)

"The best thing to do," said Fergus, "is go to the far side of the dam and jump in from the bank, where the ground is high." Henry looked doubtful. "To make it convincing," Fergus said. "Convincing?" "Yes. You want Samson to believe you need his help, right? Well, then you can't just wade in... Continue Reading →

Why the Donkey Never Runs (Part 4)

Samson stood up and resumed eating grass. Henry stood alongside him, stretching his head up to see how tall he stood compared to the donkey. Not even to his knee. Henry sighed. "You can't run," he said. "That's okay. I can't swim." Samson looked down at the piglet. "I've never been in deep water," said... Continue Reading →

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