Monday, August 2, 2010
The barn with the roof of stars
My parents first bought the farm when I was five and it had a reaaally old barn on the farm (along with the house). It was about 100 years old if I remember correctly which means I have no idea how ol it was. It had holes in the roof and in the daytime it was all dark and creepy in the barn - if the big door was shut) and when you looked up it looked like you were looking at the stars at night. It was such a crazy old barn - brown paint chipping off of the outside and old junk everywhere. There was a tire swing that my older sibilings would climb to the loft and then jump off and swing from. The loft had tons of rusty nails, magazines from the turn of the century (I think) and bottles, cans and porn. The porn was modern day because it was my brothers. One time me sister stepped on a rusty nail and it went right through her sneaker AND her foot. When she put in in the pan of water or whatever it was my mother put in the pan - it bubbled right up through the hole in her foot. That barn had a garage attached to it that my mother would park the yellow station wagon in. My father had a green truck that stayed in the yard. That thing was awesome - his green truck - really old fashioned looking and one day he parked in the yard and never used it again. It almost became one with the earth completely - it sank and sank and sank. Then one day when I decided I wanted it and that maybe it was a classic - it was gone. The barn is also gone because it burned down when I was in the 8th grade. April - around Easter. Everyone was down in the Christmas Tree field helping plant trees and I was in the house because I had Lyme Disease so I couldn't help. Well I see my Father running up from the field and I had almost never seen my Father run and then I see my brother and my mother and everyone running towards the house. MY mother burst into the house and said "Call 911 the barn is on fire!!" I guess yelled is more like what she did. Well I did nothing and she ran past me and called. I ran over to the kitchen window and saw my brother fling open that big barn door and that rusty dusty farm just lit up. I guess because he flung the door opened the flames got oxygen and just fully ingnited. He was trying to let the animals out. Some sheep ran out and stayed out and some were trapped and some ran back in. It was awful. I'm crying even thinking about it. My father had my mother get the car out of the garage. I remember her going in and getting in the car and backing it out and thinking "What the fuck is that? Why is he making her do it??" He was more than a little emotional to say the least and completely freaked out is probably accurate. How brave my mother was to do that. The garage ended up being saved actually but not most of the sheep. That barn had old stalls that my father used to bring us to to see lambs being born and chicks hatching. I also had the privy to see a chick that only partially hatched and lay in a bloody mess in the hay. There were heating lamps in the barn for the lambs and I guess what happened was that because of those holes in the roof and the rain that had recently fallen - the hay was wet. And when hay is wet it is combustible and one of the sheep must have fallen into one of the lamps and broken it. The hot glass fell into the hay and - well there you go. If the wind had been going in a different direction that day the house might have caught fire my father said. Well it didn't but the tree next to the barn was black and smokey for years. People stopped on the highway and walked onto the farm - people came from all over and it made the front page of the paper. What a horrible way to get attention. The fire trucks left huge tire treads in the front yard and from what I remember they fucked up somehow. They let all the water out by accident?? I just remember it being a crazy mess - people everywhere - fire trucks all over the yard and the smell. Sheep cooking. I've never really been able to eat lamb since then and my parents never cooked it again. Well I looked up at the moon in the alley the other night when I was walking my dog and I saw one really REALLY bright star by the moon and I remembered that barn roof. It reminded me so much of that roof somehow that one star - it was so crazy. My father rebuilt the barn and for the longest time left the old garage attached to it. Now that barn has only the big door of it painted red. No more brown. And no nore old garage - now it's a new garage that no one parks there cars in. Ahh - life - so bizarre.