Sunday, November 30, 2008


By Glenda C. Beall

As I enter the corn crib door,
the fragrance of cottonseed meal
fills my nostrils, so enticing
I want to see if it really

tastes like toasted nuts.
White flour left from shelled,
cracked corn is scattered on the floor
around the hand mill. Tiny grey mice

feed on kernels; either very brave
or too intent to notice me.
Light shoots into darkness
through narrow crevices
between the wide rough boards.
Rays seek out the spiders'
lacy traps which line
the corners and the angle made

by roof and wall. The smells
are musty hay and dry dung,
pungent, mules that munch
on grain in troughs nailed up in stalls.

Chickens, fat and full, sit
on straw-filled nests
hung high above the ground
away from predators except the snake

that sneaks and swallows eggs.
I climb the ladder to the loft
look down, and long to swoop and fly
like sparrows nesting in the eaves.

Untamed kittens peep from piles of hay
then skitter back at my approach.
Tails straight up like flag poles,
they disappear in narrow tunnels between bales.

Without warning, rain pounds upon
the tin roof, giving me good reason
to curl up here and hide awhile.
I'm overcome with contentment.


Brenda Kay Ledford said...


I've always loved this poem. It reminds me of my Granddaddy Ledford's barn and corncrib.
Brenda Kay Ledford

Nancy Simpson said...

Glenda, I like this poem. It is rich with imagery.