Friday, June 11, 2010

The Barn

This story was written for the May Pic 1K montly challenge over at Soft Whispers

To the west of our homestead was the old barn, still standing strong. It had been through a fire that swept across the valley, the flood that gushed through at ankle height and the animals that lived there through the cold months.

The pigs snorted as I climbed the ladder to the loft. I could smell the cow’s saliva; the scent was stronger in the heavy wet air. Alone and lonely I hoped someone would find me. The letter I left for my parents was really just to get their attention.

I wrote, “Dear Mum and Dad, Now that you have no time for me I can see I need to find a new home. With George being born and Granny coming to stay for a week you don’t listen to me anymore and I don’t like it. I will come back when I turn 10 but til then, I’m sure I’ll find another family who will love me. Yours sincerely, Judy.”

I emptied my pockets and my back pack. After I snacked on the fruit and crackers I had stolen from home, it was time to breathe. While resting, there were no farm sounds other than the animals. Panic started to creep in, what if they didn’t care, what if they really were happy to just look after George. Maybe I really should start looking for a new family.

Then I cried, I tried to stay silent but in between the silence I gasped for breath then sobbed.

‘Judy, is that you up there?’ It was my Dad.

I didn’t say anything.


The ladder shuffled and squeaked with the weight of an adult climbing.

‘Can I join in with your tea party?’ Dad asked.

I stayed silent.

‘Was George too noisy? Did you want to get away from his crying for a while?’

‘Did you see my letter?’ I asked.

‘Letter? No, I haven’t seen any letters today. Is it serious?’

‘I guess not really.’

‘Pass me some crackers please, it’s a couple of hours since I ate.’

I did just as Dad asked and smiled. I guessed that everything would be alright after all.


  1. Awwww - gotta love the Dad. I wonder if he had seen the letter or if it was spontaneous!

  2. Oh, I think he'd seen it, all right - great Dad to have, and a great story, too. :-)

  3. That's a great dad. Should I slip, fall and become one, this is how I'd like to be.

  4. I'm lol-ing at John's comment, but this is a terrific story, Michelle. You're writing has come a long way! This has a very nice pace to it - well done!

  5. Love this charming and tender story! Dad is the greatest, giving his little girl exactly what she needs.

    Laughing at John slipping and falling into fatherhood!

    Stay off ladders, John. :)

  6. Jemi & Aislinn, I didn't think he had seen the letter... but maybe he had??

    John, you have to watch out when it gets slippery then!

    PJ - thanks :)

    Marissa, charming and tender? why thank you :)

  7. Ha! I rememeber 'running away' many times when I was little. Felt a bit lost in a large family. :)

    Great story Michelle. xo

  8. awwww great story. Makes me wonder what reaction the letter will get when it's found? Or did the dad read it and choose to pretend ignorance?

  9. Such a sweet story. I could just feel Judy's relief and joy at having her dad join her. Nice.

  10. Well done, Michelle! Great story. I really enjoyed it. :)

  11. Michelle! So sorry I haven't visited for a while. Been shocking here of late! I love this... so very sweet. The ending really made me smile.

  12. Thanks for dropping by and reading - I really appreciate your kind words.


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