The Farm House by Andrew Scott

The Maeve of the Mountain by Andrew Scott

The Farm House by Andrew Scott

Part One – The Farm House

Standing outside this old farm house,
the place that I spent my youth.
I am not sure why I was selected
to come here before it gets torn down.
I have spent that past thirteen years
avoiding every corner of this haggard place
but for some reason I was voted
to come here and go through
whatever junk may still be here
by brothers and sisters
that come to visit here all the time.

There is a bit of cruelty
to finish packing up this wreck
before the family living next to this shack,
that rented it to us, tears what remains down.

Why this was not done before baffles me.
A breath in, moving through
a hole where the front door once was.
I am feeling already
how I am going to despise this.
Why did I agree to this?

Part Two – Sanctuary 

I know the first lace I am gong.
A little room right at the top
of the old, wooden stairs.
Too decayed to be called a staircase.

I stand at the doorway
of my first private bedroom,
wondering how a bed
and a dresser fit in here.

So small, these walls were
but they protected myself well
as a guard against the harsh air
that lived in the rest of the house.

Somehow it was enough room
for a radio, books and back and white television.
All strategically placed.
Part of my closed, escape room

The room taught me
that I did not need a lot
to be happy.
Pack light to this day.

Aside from a couple of dirty books
there was nothing left in this room
though my father told me
to leave something behind
so I could find my way home
if I needed too.
When I left, I did not feel
like leaving anything here.

Part Three – The Bedrooms 

There are two more bedrooms
that us kids had.
The girls shared one
and after I got moved to my own,
my brother had his own.

The boys room did not
have anything left
aside from a broken desk.

Checking the closet
I am reminded of a little panel
that leads to a dusty, wet attic.
When I was younger
it was such a creepy place.
I will avoid that today.

Wrapped up in the corner of the closet
I find a pair of blood stained pants
from one of the most chaotic, bloody
nights that existed in this castle.
There were other brutal nights
but never as bad as that one.
The memory is making me dry heave with anxiety.

Sweating I leave and go
to the girl’s room.
Thank fully there was nothing
but bad wallpaper
and an ashtray that was used
for smoking the girls lied about.
Not sure why though.
We all smoked, why lie.

Part Four – Master Bedroom

The last bedroom
was a room I had never
truly really spent
anytime in when I lived here.
The master bedroom of my parents.

It took years to figure out
that it was really my father’s room.
My mother always slept downstairs.
I always thought it was the shifts they worked
but more thoughts on that later I think.

One of the times I did come in here
was to search for Christmas presents.
We found them but never opened them.
Worse search ever really.

There was a stack of old newspapers
and an old suitcase
where my father would roll coins
and lock them away left in the room.
More than one of us kids
borrowed from that savings stash.

For my father being a hoarder,
he did not leave a lot in this room.
Less for me to carry downstairs.

Part Five – Living / Dining Room

The living room and dining room
are somewhat connected.
A small arc in the wall connects them.
For a family as big as ours
we really did not use
either spacious room all that much.

The living room was where the big television was
but we never all just sat and had
a full family night in there.
One of us was usually missing.
Later in teenage life, it was usually me.

I did try to stay awake on hockey nights
but usually did fall asleep before my father did in that room.
The small thing we tried to do together
before my defiant times and mind took over.
After that there were no more Saturday nights.
Just two people that did not understand each other.

The dining room was used less.
Special occasions like Christmas or Thanksgiving
when we were all younger and home.
As we got older, not even holidays
brought us all to the same table.

Will say the table was solid.
I had it with me until recently.
Means it was over forty years old
before time said it had to be replaced.

After my mother left us
I turned the dining room
into a min office for homework.
School books, coffee and ashtray.
It was just my father and I
and he stayed in the kitchen.

Both rooms are cleared out now.
Thankfully there is nothing to carry.

Part Six – The Hallway

The hallway downstairs
connected everything together.
All rooms ran through here.

Somehow it became
another television room.
Just the way the hallway was.
Another couch and television
fit for us to use.

Overtime it also became
my mother’s unofficial bedroom.
Never really thought about
why she always slept there.
IT all came together after she left.

The end of the hallway
housed her liquor storage.
It was out in the open for easy access.
My father’s was generally hidden
but they both hid things from us.
Probably secrets are still hidden.

Part Seven  – The Kitchen

The last room and the busiest
when everyone lived here, the kitchen.

There are two stoves,
one electric and one oil.
A dishwasher that never worked.
The most used was a metal kitchen table.

That table hosted everything,
breakfast, at times, holiday dinners,
the essential morning coffee.

That table is where
we found out on a late Saturday night
that our mother was leaving us.
A year before I was to graduate.
Surprised but expected really.
My father and mother
really did not like each other.

Many days after that,
my father and I had many coffees
at the same table
when it was just us
after everyone moved.

A lot of close to healing
conversations took place.
Though stained blood on the wall
made full healing difficult.
I did not throw the first punch
but I did throw the last.
We both knew it.

Part Eight – Bury It

Have gone from room to room
with really nothing to collect.
What is there is not worth anything.
At least in my mind.

It is good to leave
this old farm house one last time.
Have left hoping to never
come back many times.

Never sure why
I could not get over this place
or the bad memories that the wall held.
As I walk away I know this time
the old farm house will be gone and buried.

text

July 5, 2019
© Andrew Scott – Just A Maritime Boy 2019

 

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Andrew Scott is a native of Fredericton, NB. During his time as an active poet, Andrew Scott has taken the time to speak in front of a classrooms, judge poetry competitions as well as be published worldwide in such publications as The Art of Being Human, Battered Shadows and The Broken Ones. His books, Snake With A Flower, The Phoenix Has Risen, The Path, The Storm Is Coming and Through My Eyes are available now. Searching is his fifth poetry collection.

 

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