Friday, April 13, 2012

Grampa Joe's Barn

Grampa Joe’s Barn
by Julie C. Eger

Grampa Joe had
a salt and pepper moustache
green dickey pants
stuck his tongue out behind your back
drank his coffee from a saucer
ate his peas with a knife

lined his oil-stained workbench
with jars full of gasoline
and thick paint in old coffee cans
hung the walls
with hammer heads, bucksaws,
and rakes that grinned toothless smiles,
pitchforks that could not pitch a tune
parked an electric grinder atop
a Cities Service welder that patiently
rusted in a corner
of the barn.

The pine beam split during the last storm
and the second floor landed on top
of the 31 Chevy Coupe, straw sprinkled down
on the bones of the coon
a long time dead now.
Tools rusted in buckets
of nails that would never hold anything
together again.

He saw the double doors twisted open,
the sag in the tin roof
as he stood peering out
chained to his oxygen tank
by the hoses he would drag
from room to room
watching through the windows
as the old barn struggled to hang on.

~ first published in Free Verse