Working with Details

Crazy green stone, like something still alive, stone pulled out of this earth and cut, then stacked into walls, thick walls, the corners square, the lines straight, laid with great precision. An old serpentine stone barn, generations old. The wood was the weakness. Rotted out of the window frames.  Rot in the door frames. The great doors that let the herd in each morning, each evening, sag now, their edges stuck in the cobblestones of the yard, unmovable, gaping open. Inside, the rusted metal stanchions summoning the ghosts of cows as surely as if they were there. Conjuring up the sweet smell of hay, the soft squirts of milk in a pail, the mew of cats, a rhythm of the past, a rhythm to be trusted. Above, the mow, empty of its load of bales, the floor rotting under the places where the roof now leaks. The wind having it way with the stray wisps of straw and hay on the mow floor, swirling them, swirling them, those left from a time this great fortress of a building was expected to grow old rather than decay. 

1 comment:

  1. I'm old, but the barn is older. It's older than my daddy and his daddy but not older than my great, great granddaddy because he's the one built it. Him and his old mule Jim. They rough planed the timbers and dragged them up the hill and then did the same with the planking and the roofing. That barn is a member of the family and has been for four generations. It's funny that I haven't noticed until today that it's haunted. It moves and shifts and moans and sunlight is shinning right through it in places. It used to smell like hay and now it smells like moldy corn. This morning when I touched it, just barely laid my hand on it's side, I felt it shift, not much... just enough to let me know that it's not as solid as I've always thought it was. I have an idea it won't see another generation of us...