©Judi Barr

©Judi Barr

My neighbor has a beautiful old barn shot through with holes. Sunlight flows through these holes as if placing a spotlight on each individual tool, a shovel or rake, a hammer and crowbar allowed to lie on the floor as if too exhausted having performed its task so well it cannot climb to its allotted peg on the ancient walls. Disarray. It’s lovely. The bats like this barn. Upside down in the rafters they peer through the holes in the roof, keep an eye on the moon careful to stay clear of the light that pools on the scented straw where deer wander in from the vineyard to sleep a spell always up and away before my neighbor wakes. My neighbor would like to be rid of the bats and their guano, but they refuse to leave, no matter what she does. Like the swallows of San Juan Capistrano, they always return. Every night in summer I wait for them to emerge. A small pointillist cloud. Spots of ink disperse, reappear, as a spiral, a caterpillar, a triangle, sometimes a butterfly.

For Samuel Peralta’s last post at dverse… he asks us to write a prose poem..


13 thoughts on “Bats

  1. Your description really helped me picture this barn. I think the bats know a good thing when they have it. I understand why they wouldn’t leave such a fine home! Smiles/

  2. old barns are cool places…there used to be several behind my uncles house, we used to explore them…so many different textures…things you dont see anymore in them…so much for the eye and the imagination to take in….bats in the rafters….yikes…ha.

  3. The bats will stay on irrespective, as long as they feel safe! It’s such a bother to get rid of them. We’ve had a share of them. It was frustrating! You brought out the reality of the situation! Nicely Steph!


  4. What a marvelous origami here, using prose to enfold an old barn and then with poetry revealing those bats whose appearance, well, sings.

  5. very cool.. i love old barns – my uncle had some on his farm and we used to play and discover lots of things – no bats though….oy… they would’ve scared me..


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