Monday, January 3, 2011

Red Barn in Winter

What makes a big old barn such an intriguing building?

E.B. White was a master of using descriptive language. I remember a part in Charlotte's Web when he described the barn using only the sense of smell. I know I'll butcher the beautiful flow of his sentences, but it went something like this....

.... The barn smelled of hay and of manure, of rubber boots, and the perspiration of tired horses.  It smelled of axle grease, new rope and of the sweet breath of patient cows. And whenever the cat was given a fish head to eat, it would smell of fish. But there was always the smell of hay. Hay being pitched down from the loft...

I'm sure there was more, and I'm sure it was worded much more elegantly, but the spirit of his words is there. Somehow we just want to be there enjoying that. And, how can cow breath and fish heads be pleasant... I don't know, but somehow I believe that this red barn holds similar delightful smells.

1 comment:

  1. I love barns, had horses, goats, chickens growing up. And dogs and cats. The first "real" book I read to my first son when he was about four was Charlotte's Web. Thanks for bringing out that memory. The movie version of a few years ago was a wonderful adaptation... And I bought it. Your barn painting is lovely.