Goat Song: A Seasonal Life, A Short History of Herding, and the Art of Making Cheese
When acclaimed novelist Brad Kessler started to feel unsatisfied by his Manhattan lifestyle, he opted to tackle his issues of over-consumption and live a more eco-friendly life. He and his wife moved to a seventy-five acre g...more
I recently finished a series of three IRS exams to become an Enrolled Agent. For the final one, I found a colleague who was also studying for the same test, and we became study partners. Two times a week, for 10 weeks, we met at a Panera in between our two homes and shlogged through the very difficult and boring material.
One of the topics was Farm Taxation. Now, there are no farms to speak of in metro Boston, and the odds of either of us EVER doing a...more
Well, technically, I'm always moving. Whether to a new apartment, home, city or region, it seems I can't keep myself still. Maybe that's why I continually return to the Midwest: a place that--in the public mindset anyway--looks to be immutable; still. I love the romantic view of a land so broad and uninterrupted that a sunset is not just an event, it's a spectacle.
Yet, if you know anything about Kansas, you know it's anything BUT still: otherworldly winds, cyclones, torrential...more
Kessler tells the history of both goat herding and the making of cheese while telling his own story of the first year or so of owning goats and making...more
While on the F train yesterday:
Lou: I want a goat.
Lou: I want a pair of goats so they don't get lonely.
Lou: You can feed six goats on $745 dollars a year.
Jeremy: Finish a book and then we can talk about it.
Lou: In five years? Then we can have a farm in commuting distance to the city and goats and one horse...more
"A goat's anus would open like the aperture of a camera and produce pe...more
The author tells you more about goat herding than I ever thought possible! He talks about the role of herding from the dawn of civilization, and how human...more
This book made me laugh out loud on numerous occassions. As a goat owner myself I was able to relate well to the author as he decided to start on his goat journey. He describes choosing the goats, getting the barns reading, buying them and travelling to their new home. The relationship with the new goats, their personalities, habits, and interesting characteristics.
I could relate so well to the descriptions of the goats, their hierarchy within the group and with the humans. Laughed hard at the...more
I am a firm believer that one can find religious symbols and/or lessons in most things in life. But b...more
One thing I would have liked to have seen...more
“If you follow living beings assiduously in the field, or through the lens of a microscope,” writes Kessler, “they lead you to an u...more
When I read non-fiction I tend to be very 'nuts and bolts', I like a lot of the how's and the why's. This book doesn't have much of those. So how can it get four stars? Because the writing is so damn beautiful! This book shows more craft then...more
I also learned more -- much more -- about the sex lives of goats than I wanted to know.
And I learned enough about the art of making cheese to decide that I'll never again complain about the price of cheese.
The author and his wife buy a farm in Vermont so they can raise goats and make cheese.
My interest in goats and in cheese is marginal at best. Yet I liked this book a great deal, primarily because Brad Kessler...more
His luscious prose brought me back into the sensuality and rootedness in the physical that made me fall in love with agriculture in the first place. Yes, herding, animals, working...more
Writer Brad Kessler and his photographer wife Dona had a successful Manhattan life, but longed for the country, for fresh air and the chance to grow their own food. At last they found the perfect place in Vermont, and decided to become dairy farmers--specifically goats. They string fencing over a 3 acre square, refab an old chicken coop into a barn, and buy their first 4 goats. And so the adventure begins. And what an adventure it is. This is a love story between human and animal, pa...more
Kessler is simile's master and commander. (Or at least its shepherd.) He manages to make magnificent all the most potentially sophomoric figurative tricks. (I did roll my eyes a little that the moon is never "the moon". It's always the "[adj] + moon", the moon++.) He's great with tone and audience. The first half is hilarious *and* contemplative. The back end keeps up. I loved how recognizable his joy, his rhythm is. This is the way a story sounds from a person who is mak...more