The Rusty Ol’ Barn

Nature, in all her beauty, will, at times, in the split of a second, compromise all what’s good in our life and put a spin to our existence.  Sometimes we survive and sometimes, we don’t.

Fortunately, where I live, natural calamities have not been common.  They have not been non-existent, either.  Floods, blizzards, heat, drought, lightning and thunderstorms are the hazards that nature throws at us the most to keep us alert.  But, occasionally, Mother Nature shows up unexpectedly to remind us how small and insignificant we are to her powers.  In the early morning hours of July 4th, 1980, she showed up at the farm and I wasn’t home but my family was.

(Late in the year 1979)


The Rusty Ol’ Barn

The rusty ol’ barn is not like it was years ago.
Her rafters creak loudly when the wind starts to blow.
Threshers that once whistled tunes from her roof,
quickly light down then leave in alarm,
startled by the noises of the rusty ol’ barn.

(36,000 bushel corn crib, south cattle barn, my CJ-5 Jeep, wife and dog in earlier photo)

She’s stood a long time through war and through drought,
holding her own with storms all about.
But just before dawn, that early July morn’,
a twister turned north and did her some harm.
Though sagging, she’s standing, that rusty ol’ barn.

(notice the south barn is gone)

(day before the crib was emptied. You can see barn and machine shed in background)

Sneaking aloft like most twisters do,
it attacked from the south and nobody knew.
It skipped and hopped and roared like a train,
de-legging the corn crib and flattening the barn,
that guarded the southern most part of the farm.

(the barn sustained more damage on the of the buildings were untouched)

Proudly but listing in the darkness she stood
‘midst bird cries and rubble and piles of wood.
It wouldn’t be long before dawn would arrive
to expose the wounds inflicted on the farm…
the friend and home of the rusty ol’ barn.

The rusty ol’ barn now stands not alone
with the memories now sewn ‘neath the grass and the loam.
Where the south barn and crib stood, there’s now lots of corn
covering the memories from that night of alarm
when the twister swooped down on Probasco Farm.

(The barn with temporary fix. Torn down six years later)

copyright © 2011 T.J. Gargano


Filed under barns

5 responses to “The Rusty Ol’ Barn

  1. Good imagery. I remember seeing old barns like this.

    • thomag1

      after her initial hits by the tornado, she stood another eight years or so. It had a certain charm….was a haven to a few friendly critters and a couple of horses. thanks for dropping by.


  2. thomag1

    Reblogged this on The Poet's Crafts/The Olding Poet and commented:

    This is a re-post of ‘The Rusty Ol’ Barn’ since I found some old pictures to add to it….

  3. Julie Catherine

    Awesome poem, Tom – and I love the title. I love weathered and battered old barns, they hold a strange fascination for me. ~ Julie 🙂

    • thomag1

      thanks for the visit, Julie. Barns have always fascinated me also. The unknown variable that many people don’t realize, is the silent affect a constant wind has. Illusive, constant winds eventually claimed the rusty ol’ barn and garage due to wind pattern changes. What was once an operable, cozy farmstead is now left with house, machine shed and chicken house. How forceful nature is.


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