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The Old Shed - poem

When I can, I will replace this whith a photo by my brother.

When I can, I will replace this whith a photo by my brother.

Taken from the car window. From his collection titled Shotgun Shots.

Taken from the car window. From his collection titled Shotgun Shots.

Poems by yours truly

Old shed sits in an overgrown field
Dilapidated collection of beams and boards
Once sturdy now darkening with decay

What was its purpose in its days of utility
Something was kept safe behind those doors
Now barely hanging by one last rusty hinge

Rain, wind, and sun were kept at bay
By roof and walls sealed strong and tight
Now slivers of sun shine through gaps and holes

Does it matter what it was back then
Purpose has been served and time goes on
Farm’s been sold and farmer and family gone

What could that old shed matter now
Abandoned by one, neglected by next
Left to crumble at its own slow pace

It matters enough to that passerby
Who saw beauty in those beaten boards
And snapped a photo from the passenger window

It matters to the tabby cat
Seeking shelter from the elements
As she nurses her hungry litter

And feasts on mice nesting in debris
Venturing out to hunt insects and fungus
Hiding and growing in crevices dark and moist

Vines climb and grasp the weathered wood
Shoddy shed now dressed in flowers white
Soon to give way to berries dark and sweet

Old solitary shed matters to the tiny birds
Perching on an increasingly precarious roof
Nibbling berries and posing for roadside photos

Old shed in an overgrown field sure matters
To cats and mice, berried vines and birds
And budding photographer with an eager eye

When simple shed has crumbled and fallen
And all that remains a patch of soil
Rich from decomposition of what once was

Flowers will grow and bloom with colors bright
Glorious attraction for butterflies and bees
Catching the eye and lens of the next passerby

An old shed sits in an overgrown field
Matters not to owners past or present
Yet matters the world to so many more


B Brian Hill on September 30, 2015:

I loved how much you got out of one image of the shed. Such emotions from it! I enjoyed the journey and the poem very much!

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on August 19, 2013:

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Vinaya - thank you for feeling my words in addition to reading them. that is what poetry is to me. it is putting emotion and senses on a page so that they can jump off the page to the reader.

Vinaya Ghimire from Nepal on July 31, 2013:

The central imagery in this poem stand for loneliness, pain and suffering. I liked how you use interesting metaphors.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 30, 2013:

dreamseeker2 - Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I am pleased that you connected with the sentiments of this poem. It is so satisfying to know my worlk is undserstood and enjoyed. :)

dreamseeker2 on March 29, 2013:

It is a great tribute to things old but useful, with a beauty over time within the eye of the beholder. So many stories can be told from such a view as an old shed. Great write! : ) Awesome and up in votes.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 28, 2013:

Eiddwen - Eddy! I am SO happy you found this one. Even happier that you like it. :)

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 28, 2013:

dghbrh - so nice to see you again! I am glad you like this.Thank you for the vote. I am following you now too. See you around!

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 28, 2013:

Phyllis Doyle - Thank you for the lovely comment. Yes, that old shed is so many things and will become so many things. I am delighted that I could tell its story in a way that others are able to enjoy it.

Thank you for the votes and the follow. See you around

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 28, 2013:

Vellur - I guess you likes it! You have me doing a happy dance :)

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 28, 2013:

Faith Reaper - So please you enjoyed this enough to share. Old shed really do make such beautiful and inetersting photos. It must be their story shining through.

Eiddwen from Wales on March 28, 2013:

A wonderful poem Dana and thank you for sharing this gem.


deergha from ...... a place beyond now and beyond here !!! on March 28, 2013:

Very engaging . Voted up and away.

Phyllis Doyle Burns from High desert of Nevada. on March 27, 2013:

Lovely poem, Dana. You have captured the ambiance and the essence of an old shed that is ready to crumble, yet now has a useful purpose to nature. Once new and useful to humans, it now is a haven to critters and one day will return to the earth, to provide ever more useful gifts.

Well done! Voted up and beyond.

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on March 27, 2013:

Beautiful, beautiful awesome poem. Voted way up.

Faith Reaper from southern USA on March 27, 2013:

Excellent poem Dana! Really enjoyed the read.

Have seen many of these along the way, and wanted to take a photo too.

Voted up ++++ and sharing

God bless, Faith Reaper

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Sunshine625 - Then I have done my job!.... You know I love to write because I enjoy it. When others enjoy it, and when I can leave something with the reader, that is so meaninful for me.... Your comment might be short, but it is one of my favorites. :)

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Gypsy Rose Lee - I really enjoyed teasing out what sorts of things that old shed might be hiding, and what might be in its future. Thank you for passing along the fun.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

teaches12345 - happy to bring back good memories. :)

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Nell - Thank you for voting and sharing. Thanks also for the comment. So happy you enjoyed this - knowing that mkes the writing that much more enjoyable.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

diogenes - Bob, it is so nice to see you here. What a lovely comment. You see, the shed was never mundane, but the perception of it was. It is such a shame that old things sometimes get passed over as being less alive or less important. Everything has worth, everything has a story. It is the job of folks like me to bring that story to folks like you.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

AudreyHowitt - Thank you. I enjoyed writing this.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

jhamann - Exactly! I really did feel like I needed to tell this story. All of a sudden one day these sheds stopped being just sheds. Then all of a sudden I got the ned to share that. How keen of you to pick up on it.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Jools99 - Julie, I am so pleased that I was able to awaken your senses in such a wonderful way. What a treat to read your comment. Thank you for sharing this with me.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

AudraLeigh - Everything has beauty in it. I think my favorite beauty is the kind that is not obvious or that comes out of soething "unbeautiful". Thanks for a beautiful comment. xx

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on March 27, 2013:

I'll never look at an old shed the same way again! :)

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Christy - I am so very hapy that my words allowed you to join me here. That is what I love about writing - giving experiences to my readers, andmy friends. :) xx

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Peggy W - It is amazing how many of these sheds dot the landscape. I have taken many road trips and they are always a part of the scenery... My little brother had such a great way of capturing conrty scenery. He did with photos what a poet does with words. It was such a beautiful feeling to be inspired by him....

Thank you so mich for you sweet comment, and for voting.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Debbie - oooh snakes. I love snakes. Now I feel like a need to write a snale poem..... Yes. That shed has history, and it matters, at every stage of its life. Just like people do.

Luv u Dear! xx

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Jackie Lynnley - They do make such wonderful photos, don't they? It is said that a pictire tells a thousand words, I simply put a few of them down in writing. Thank you for reading them.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Lisa Luv - We can see amazing things if we just stop and look a little closer sometimes. So happy you liked this enough to share :)

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Vincent Moore - Another visit from one of my favorite poets! I am so pleased that I could take you through the life of this old shed. I do love to share my experiences and feeling with my friends. Thankyou so much for voting and sharing.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

CloudExplorer - Wow. Thank you so very much for the amazing comment and compliments regarding my poem and me... What I did for this shed, looked beyond the surface to it's depth and connections with the world is what you do with the urban images you so beautifully capture and pair with words....

I was thinking just recently how my education influences the way I view things. I have a background in biology and psychology. I can't look at anything in nature without seeing it's life and niche and it's place in the ecosystem. I can't look at a person without wondering what is under the surface. I am just now learing how to put it into words so that others can experience it with me... I get better at it every day....

Thanks for sharing this. See you around.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

tillsontitan - You make an interesting comment. I have a feeling there are many out there with the talent, BUT how many have the desire or the heart to see past the surface of things.... Thank you for the votes, and the thought provoking comment.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Mhatter99 - An old shed and enchanting and romantic. It warms my heart to know that is what came through for you. As always I am so truly happy you stopped by.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

Vickiw - I am pleased to know that I was able to paint you a picture of what lies beneath. I have a habit of looking at things on more than one level. Sometimes it drives me batty, and sometimes it results in a poem. :)

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

midget38 - Michelle, my thoughts exactly. There is always so much more to things, and people too, than what we see at a glance. .... thank you so much for sharing this.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 27, 2013:

jbshaban - Hack. Maybe that is grandpa's shed. I got the photo from flckr until I can get one of my brother's. My dad has them... I think that is really great that you and your brother tried to make the shed your own. My older brother and I had a tree forth and we had some great times in there! I am sure there were some critters enjoying your grnadpa's shed... Thank you so much for this cimment. It is wonderful to learn about your memories. :)

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 26, 2013:


Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 26, 2013:

Stephanie Henkel - Those old sheds really do make for great photos, as do a lot of things many people just pss by. It takes a special eye to notice them. My little brother took so many amazing photos of sheds, fences, signs. I am so impressed by them. Lately, for some reason, I find myself wondering about the stories of those sheds, whart they were and why they are there.... I hope you find many more sheds and other interesting thins to capture in photos.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 26, 2013:

D.Juris Stetser - oh my what lovely words. Thank you so much for the votes. I am so glad you connected with this the way you did.... Don't sell yourself short. You can do anything you put your heart into. You have done so many very lovely things and have many more to offer.

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 26, 2013:

Bill - thanks for popping in right away to check this one out. Just because things are old, doesn't mean they don't still have a lot to offer.

Gypsy Rose Lee from Daytona Beach, Florida on March 22, 2013:

Voted up. Great poetry. There is a certain mystery and wonder to things like old sheds and your poetry brought so much interesting imagery of cats and birds and nature. Enjoyed and passing this on.

Dianna Mendez on March 21, 2013:

We had an old shed similar to this in our backyard when I was a child. IT brings back many good memories. Enjoyed your poem.

Nell Rose from England on March 21, 2013:

Absolutely beautiful Dana. Your story showed through, all the people who had been there, the cat and so on, wonderful piece of writing, sharing and voted! nell

diogenes from UK and Mexico on March 21, 2013:

Just beautiful Dana. You have the ability to lift a mundane thing from obscurity to great worth again.

Such a true poem. All the things that an old shed does for so many creatures as well as providing oodles of character for a photo. If old shed could talk! Imagine all they have seen and how they would thank you for caring for them again.


Audrey Howitt from California on March 21, 2013:

Beautifully descriptive piece--and so evocative--

Jamie Lee Hamann from Reno NV on March 21, 2013:

What an incredible poem, it sounds like that shed needed its story to be told. Thank you for sharing! Jamie

Jools Hogg from North-East UK on March 21, 2013:

Dana, this is wonderful, so evocative. I can see that old shed, I can see the overgrown ground, the brambles and vines. I can smell the damp air inside and see the straw gathered in corners by chilly little rodents - great poem.

AudraLeigh on March 21, 2013:

When I take photos, even bad ones, I try to seesome kind of beauty in it. I will spend eons looking for sure! When I read your line, " saw beauty in those beaten boards", I thought of how much beauty you have inside to share to the word through such beautiful words. This was bu-ti-ful :)

Christy Birmingham from British Columbia, Canada on March 21, 2013:

Dana, you explain the surroundings so well I feel I am there too! A beautiful description xx

Dana Strang (author) from Ohio on March 21, 2013:

THANK YOU to everyone that has commented, voted and shared. wow!

I ADDED a PHOTO taken BY MY BROTHER. I am still waiting to get a digital copy of his shed! I WILL BE BACK LATER TO RESPOND TO ALL THE WONDERFUL MESSAGES!

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on March 21, 2013:

What a beautiful depiction of an old decaying shed in the field. We have seen many of them as well as abandoned out buildings on our many trips across parts of America. Knowing that this was also intertwined with thoughts of your brother who snapped a picture out of a car window of just such a shed made this all the sweeter. May he rest in peace and may you always have sweet memories of him. Up and beautiful votes.

Deborah Brooks Langford from Brownsville,TX on March 21, 2013:

Wow that shed looks familiar.. How did you know? lol I love the poem.. it does matter that old shed.. has a history and now the rats and snakes and bugs are enjoying it.. wonderful my friend.. thank you for enlighten my day


Jackie Lynnley from the beautiful south on March 21, 2013:

Very pretty, I photograph these too, knowing there is something luring about them and you have given that new meaning.

Lisa J Warner AKA Lisa Luv from Conneticut, USA on March 21, 2013:

GREAT! Excellent observation! Voting up and sharing! Keep up the good work!

Vincent Moore on March 21, 2013:

What a wonderful visual piece of art you've presented here dear poet. You have taken your poetic brush and from you palette of many colors you painted us your readers the stages of age of this old shed. I felt the history behind your imagery. Simply brilliant work, thank you for sharing it here, voted up and shared my fine poet.

Mike Pugh from New York City on March 21, 2013:

This poem is filled with truth yeilded from a powerfully creative and talented poetic mind. I sense you can feel the decaying of things in your mind, and also the beauty of this life and all that it entails as you sense the scenery around you Dana.

This isn't an easy thing to do to accurately detail the tapestry the nature, and the time change and period of things in its passing away and uprooting growth rates.

Wow! is all I could think about when I keep on reading each lovely well crafted line and poetic verse after verse.

You definitely have a powerful understanding of the usage of words, and their connection to physical things in the environment you've just wrote about (Simply amazing!), and this tells a lot about how educated of a person you truly are, besides the deep inward feelings you have for your love connection to that of the outside world.

Compelling poem, you have blown me completely away! Whoa!! thumbs up super high and sharing this one everywhere I can.

Mary Craig from New York on March 21, 2013:

How many of us have looked at old sheds and had similar thoughts...but none of us the talent to write so beautifully about it!

Voted up and awesome.

Martin Kloess from San Francisco on March 21, 2013:

Enchanting. You painted a very romantic picture. Thank you

Vickiw on March 20, 2013:

Hi Dana, lovely poem, exploring the inside and outside of the old shed. Your words give us another picture, in addition to the one on your Hub.

Michelle Liew from Singapore on March 20, 2013:

Yes, we should definitely not take things for granted even as we move on. Thanks for sharing, Dana, and I am passing this lovely poem on.

jbshaban from California on March 20, 2013:

I stopped to read this poem the moment I saw the picture of the old shed. That's MY grampa's old shed. Okay, it's not, but it very well could have been! And your words were so right, precisely describing and old farmer's shed that no longer had a purpose. My brother and I tried to make it ours, as children, a kind of clubhouse on the top of a mountain bordering a clearing, but it was too far for everyday use. I think the critters were happier for that. I'm glad you have these memories of your brother, and thank your for reminding me of some I have with mine.

Stephanie Henkel from USA on March 20, 2013:

I have often photographed an old shed or barn because I loved its weathered look, but you've captured so much more than the image with your poetry, you've captured it's essence. This is a very beautiful poem, Dana, and I love it!

D.Juris Stetser from South Dakota on March 20, 2013:

Dana!!! This is absolutely wonderful...the beautiful connections to all the multitude of lifeforms supported by a weathered but picturesque old shed...this is brilliant....Sharing for sure, Voted Up, Awesome, Beautiful, and interesting...there should be more buttons like one for 'freakin' amazing. What empathy and sensitivity...I'd love to think someday I could do something half as lovely as this....

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on March 20, 2013:

That was really beautiful, Dana! It takes a great eye to see so much in an old weathered building. Great job!

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