Counting Sheep

My 1021 Days in the Field

Lindén, Axel
Swedish title
Non Fiction \ Narrative non-fiction & Essays
Pub Date
Oct 06, 2017

 A literary graduate cancels his doctoral studies and moves to a country side farm with his family, where he is tasked with the responsibility of caring for a herd of sheep. But spending time with sheep turns out to be very different from what he expected. Is he really the one caring for them, or are they the ones keeping him? The truth lies somewhere in between, and seeing yourself through sheep's eyes renders new perspectives and insights.

 This is a contemplative and irresistibly delightful book about the choices we make, and how everyday life has a way of slowly revealing the truth about life's sometimes harsh conditions, but also its small wonders.

10 th July

‘Small paths appear across the fields. The sheep follow one another so as not to trample the pasture. I never would have thought of that idea myself.’


9 th September

‘Today the ewes met me in the yard. Lovely, but a bit inappropriate. I herded them back in and made the fence better.’


15 th September

‘I’m sick. If the sheep had escaped today they would have had the run of the farm. Checked the water.’


18 th November

‘I can’t stop thinking about what I’m doing. And think again and then start all over again. Dwell on things, many would say. Like this - writing down the detail of my days with the sheep. How should it sound? Quite a big part of the work is solitary and rather boring, grey and uneventful. Should my notes also be a little dull?’