More than 15 years later I return
to ask permission from the Bass's
to visit buildings I played in and around when I was a kid
to walk past corn cribs and barns built of a now hollowed aged wood,
their lower levels diffused with the smell and sight of dung and dust
of 200 years,
still hoary-marked with a faded rosette
white and red and dapple green.
Sheep sometimes were used for lawn mowers.
Six of us, we'd check on them once every thirty minutes,
except the time my brother forgot and ironically his sheep strangled itself
to the ground on a hot summer day?
Flaking grey wood so bare of paint half-covers the corn crib
now a simple rectangular skeleton
who for evenings reposes with its long lean shadow,
its body ripped-almost apart by the tides of seasons gone by,
but now lays dying choking on the overgrown weeds
running amok in and around the legs and bowels.
MY mind recalls a simpler time:
iron ringing against iron
mother calling us to dinner
banging heavy on a great metal triangle.
This dinner part made by an acre now come full
of cucumber, peas, green beans, corn,
and so many that the mind loses count.