Hallie Watson



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Barn and Hollyhocks 19.5x27.5
Jumping in the hay

     When my parents bought the farm life got suddenly interesting and exciting. Instead of the city, paved,  orderly and swept clean of leaves and grass clippings there was gentle chaos. Barns were especially wonderful. There were huge piles of manure, broken boards holding up mountains of hay and ancient spider webbed rafters sheltering living creatures that were new to me and mostly scarily huge whose intentions and thoughts were unknown to city me.

     There was so much going on in the basement gloom of the barn it was magical.

     Over all of it was a delicious farm smell- a mixture of hay, manure, open air and work clothes.

     There was a wonderful awareness of danger. There might be a hole in the old floorboards. I might fall through the floor and be lost forever. I might disappear down the covered well. I might be trampled by a pig. I walked around the holes.

     When I climbed into the rafters and jumped into the piles of loose hay my insides lurched when I stepped off into space and my wings spread as I soared through the air. Each leap was an experiment with chance but not a challenge to consequences. I see myself as an adult looking at the child jumping into space and think how lucky I was to jump thoughtlessly. I embraced the joy of flight and the excitement of landing and I did it for hours until I felt like stopping. There was nothing else I had to do. I was Saturday, the day made for jumping in the hay.


Barn and Hollyhocks 19.5x27.5