The Barn Where It Was Dry
Spring was an awful time to be sick about losing a girl, especially after you let yourself get all caught up in it and gave yourself away by letting her get too close inside you where it started to matter what she said or did. It was something that couldn’t be gone back over and fixed so you were there on the edge of the land in the rain sleeping alone in a goddamned barn with the poison hurt of it. But in your pocket there was some money and a ticket back to the reservation at Mescalero even though it made you feel less of a man to be running away from it. The only token from the whole mess of the situation was the scar you carried away that showed you were capable of an emotional investment in somebody other than yourself. Up until then you were too chickenshit to bring anything up from within you that might lay you open to slaughter and yes, you were a fool to open up but you did it because you finally could and you wanted to be loved but were cut down and gored through instead.
Sometimes when it rained the horses would come up the hill across the meadow to be in the barn where it was dry. You could smell the oats and see the hay spread across the floor of the barn and underfoot the ground was clumpy and uneven with excrement. You hoped the horses would come but they didn’t come. Maybe the rain was not heavy enough. But the rain kept on. The rain kept on and didn’t let up. The horses stayed away.
Copyright © Horse of the Sun and Keith Haines 1999-2002. All Rights Reserved.