A Light in the House

photo by Nate Gibson

Today one of my favorite writers about life on the farm, Verlyn Klinkenborg in the New York Times Opinion Pages, muses about sometimes forgetting to turn the light off in the barn and making the trek in the dark to shut it off. I wish I’d written this:


“Usually, after turning out that forgotten barn light, I sit on the edge of the tractor bucket for a few minutes and let my eyes adjust to the night outside. City people always notice the darkness here, but it’s never very dark if you wait till your eyes owl out a little….I’m always glad to have to walk down to the barn in the night, and I always forget that it makes me glad. I heave on my coat, stomp into my barn boots and trudge down toward the barn light, muttering at myself. But then I sit in the dark, and I remember this gladness, and I walk back up to the gleaming house, listening for the horses. “

A Light in the Barn

My favorite thing about walking up from the barn at night is looking at the lights glowing in our house, knowing there is life there, even though each child has flown away to distant cities. There is love there as Dan and I rediscover our new “alone” life together. There are still future years there, as many as God grants us to stay on the farm. It is home and it is light and if all it takes is a walk from a dark barn to remind me, I’ll leave the lights on in the barn at night more often.

Thank you, Verlyn, once again, for helping me see in the dark…