Tuesday, April 18, 2017

OXPOWER #AtoZChallenge

Notes about this challenge:
The A to Z Challenge is to write to the letters of the alphabet in order, one a day each day in April, except on Sundays.
To find more A to Z Challenge blog posts, click on any A to Z Challenge link I've made in this post. Read through the comment links on that page and see what interests you.  Read.  Comment. Spread the love of our alphabet around!
If you are commenting here, please include your post's link so that I can return the visit easily.  I'd like to visit your site, if you don't mind!
If you want to see where I've visited, click on A to Z Challenge in the tab at the top and it will take you to a padlet of links.  If you want to see yours there, visit me.  If you are doing the A to Z Challenge, I'll visit you and link you. 





 


Watching an oxen pulling contest is like watching baseball.  If you like it, you really like it.  There's nothing really fast going on, but the skill and the teamwork are amazing.  

The team masters are firm but kind to their animals.  There is no abuse.  You can't abuse a team member.  An abused animal will not work for you.  Don't mistake the goading and loud voices for abuse.  The oxen respond to authority, and at no time do they get overworked or overburdened.  They have trained and been well-conditioned to do this.  The team master will quit the session if he feels an animal is at their limit.  They know what their team is capable of, and they certainly don't want their team hurt or soured for this work.

I enjoy a good oxen pull where the team is really together, pulling well together and the team master is able to keep them just calm enough as they hook on, but still excited and ready to pull as soon as they are given the command.  I actually like watching this more than baseball (sorry, Dad).


Once upon a time there were two oxen, Mt. Katahdin and Granger.  And they were born and raised in Maine.  And they grew.  And grew. You can check it out here.
I did not know about these two huge oxen until doing a bit of research on oxen for this plate. We have oxen pulls at the fairs here, and when I was in elementary school I knew a kid who lived on a farm that used oxen, and he still pulls with a team now...or did a few years ago when I last saw the pulls.  It often "runs in families" (as they mention in the video).


Mt. Katahdin and Granger

Coal-black mountains
Traveled by train
From small town Maine
To big time fame
Five tons of rippling muscle
Dark as night
Smooth as satin
Glistening might
Immaculately
polished
Click-clacking hooves
Gleaming horns
Raising the roofs
Wherever they went
One man’s dream

To grow his team
Harness a tower
Of ox power

by Donna JT Smith, 4/17/17

Tomorrow P... I love this plate.  Hope I can do it justice!  I saw it a long time ago and loved it, then finally found it again this past year and got to get my picture!  I don't even need to wonder what it is about.  The plate says it all.  See you then!

 

7 comments:

  1. Somehow, it seems a bit of nonsense to put this plate in a motor vehicle...
    -----
    Eva - Mail Adventures
    O is for Obverse. Can you always be sure which side is it?

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    Replies
    1. Ha! It does, doesn't it! That was what I first thought when I saw it, and forgot to mention it in the post! Thanks for noticing that!!!

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  2. How cool that there are still some farmers and breeders keeping these magnificent creatures from dying out. They are as much poetry in motion as any horse team, I think.
    http://laurelgarver.blogspot.com/2017/04/o-optimism.html

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  3. I watched oxen pull at a fair in Idaho. Powerful animals, for sure!

    Trudy @ Reel Focus
    Food in Film: Old 96er

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  4. 5 tons of rippling muscle. Oh my goodness!

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  5. I remember reading Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder when I was a girl, and her husband Almanzo had a team of baby oxen when he was a boy. She wrote about how he was training them. It's easy to underestimate how absolutely huge these animals are!

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  6. I loved this. In fact, I love your blog and am following. I can relate, as we are planning to move to Upper Michigan. It is an ongoing love. Maine is wonderful. I look forward to more posts.
    Put a Little Love in Your Heart
    Annie at ~McGuffy's Reader~

    ReplyDelete

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