Poem: No More Than Rubble

old barn

No More Than Rubble

The clapboards have been stripped of their paint
and rot has set in,
the boards grey and soft in the sunshine.
Only a few panes of glass remain.
Somehow, the roof remains,
the slate still intact,
the long cedar beam that holds it, still intact.

It is early in May, but here in Vermont, it is still cold.
A thin glaze of frost paints the tulip greens.
Smoke from a wood stove fills the air.

Places like this dot the forests,
Mostly abandoned, slowly coming undone,
unseen in the spring with leaves and green cover them up,
they are only seen in winter, when there is nowhere to hide
these victims of neglect.
We are willing to gaze on them in winter,
for one short season of vision,
before they disappear again and we can ignore them,
let them fail some more,
come undone,
and fall, becoming
no more than rubble.

About this poem

About the little cabins and barns that dot the landscape in most rural areas. About people. Sometimes, about ourselves.

I was going to write more, to try and turn it more optimistic. After all, we can all save something or someone, even if it is only ourselves, but somehow the poem seemed to want to end here. Always listen to the muse.

Tom

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