May 3, 2011

Barn Magic

      All sorts of things have a power which is awe-inspiring in its strength and magical in the mystery of its fount. The surge of the sea, new spring growth on brittle gray branches, the winds of a storm, or a crackling fire - all evince life's energy. The complexity and mystique of its endurance comforts, reassures, and humbles.

     I find it in a barn. Every corner thrums with vitality. Comforting sounds of feet shuffling, chains rattling, water dripping from muzzles, the munching of grain, even the scurry of little gray feet dodging large hooves for a dropped oat morsel. The scents of pine shavings, fresh hay, and the animals themselves, both invigorate but soothe the psyche. Little else brings the contentment one finds closing the barn doors on a cold winter night, knowing all are fed and content, sheltered and safe.
     Even the old, empty barn has a life force. Faded, it clings gently to the ghosts of past occupants. Spiders hang in corners, bits of dust dance in shafts of sunlight, smells linger in spite of being stale. Wood creaks, and rusted hardware eager to be worked thirsts for a bit of oil and a strong hand. Defying the silence, swallows swoop and chatter.
     I slowly close the old heavy doors, remembering and a bit wistful, but also at peace. All is still content here.


  1. So nice, Paige. I could smell Mom's old horse barn and see her feeling content after feeding and watering her horses and throwing the hay and talking to them and wishing them all good night. Then while we could see our breath and I would be cold and shivering and just half understanding her love for her animals that would make her want to go out in the freezing cold or the bitter heat with all the bugs swarming and the mucking sticking to sweaty hot legs and arms, we would walk back to the house and it felt safe and secure to have put the animals and barn to bed for the night. I treasure the memories of being in my Mom's barns with her and seeing her enjoy her animals. And my children treasure the memories of growing up in Gramma Jo's barns with her having them help and enjoy it with her. I have experienced all you wrote about when in a barn.

  2. What to say. Yep. Priceless memories.

  3. Lovely piece, but you lost me at the spider webs! LOL Thanks for sharing some of your great memories.

    I've got some writing links for mine this Follow Friday, so stop on by if you have time: And a special Mothers Day wish, too.