Old Barn (33)

//Old Barn (33)

Old Barn (33)

There’s an old barn from my
Childhood that no longer exists,
Cavernous, capacious,
Holding great heaps

Of nothing that makes sense—
Canvas buckets, barley,
Barely able to keep hay dry,
Feeding spiders—

Gone now, except for foundation
Stones, thousand pound
Beams once spanning widths of
Sky, capped with tin,

Beneath which,
In 1988, in the straw mow,
My best friend Harry Jenkins
Play-wrestled Jessica Dillon

Into the softness,
While the girl next door and I
Wordlessly excused ourselves
Into the light,

Fecund, irresistible,
To the mud of the stream bank,
Far older than the straw,
Barley, even the barn itself,

And making more sense
To me then, now, than
Wood, thrust splintering into air,
Already swept away.

By | 2019-10-16T19:27:42-05:00 September 9th, 2019|Farm|2 Comments

About the Author:

Forrest Pritchard is a full-time sustainable farmer and New York Times bestselling author, holding a BA in English and a BS in Geology from William & Mary. Smith Meadows, his farm, was one of the first “grass finished” operations in the country, and has sold at leading farmers’ markets in the Washington DC area for two decades. Pritchard's books have received starred reviews from The Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, NPR, and more.


  1. Eliot Brenner September 10, 2019 at 8:38 am - Reply

    nicely done.

    • Forrest Pritchard September 10, 2019 at 11:41 am

      Thanks! I imagine most of us have seen these barns, in the distance from the highway, if nowhere else.

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