Leave My Barn Alone


The links holler, The Red Barn Is A Thing Of The Past!

I want to shout, Leave my barn alone!

In their hurry to get connected, satellited up and

data mapped and sampled they forgot their roots.

They forgot their roots. The culture of agriculture.

There is history here. There are lessons here.

Every barn has a story to tell. Your story. My story.

Every field being computer diagnosed today once

spoke to the one who was closest to it. Soil words.

There are things no computer, map or scan can show.

The land speaks to those who take the time to hear.

Grandpa knew the soil. The plants. The animals.

A computer can only take you so far in the field.

There comes a time when you need to listen.

To hear the soil speak. To feel the artistry of farming.

No true farmer will ever abandon his fields.

Those who know their past, know their roots.

They use the tools and the knowledge.

But they never lose the touch – the sense of the land.

The smells, the feel of the soil, the sounds.

Those things, like the old red barn, can’t be

converted to a computer algorithm or map.

The greatest and best things of the heart

must be felt, seen and lived in person.

Leave my old red barn alone, it will stand.

A solitary reminder of where we came from.

A cherished memory of those long gone.


Saw an article today, and a few others, where the push to make the public view of farming more high tech and less ‘red barn and red tractor’. It made me sad. People forget where we have come from, how far we have come. They have forgotten the art of farming in their desire to perfect the science of agriculture.  That science was born from those who were passionate about farming and sought to make it better, to teach and learn. It does not replace but enhance. It should never, and can never, replace the knowledge you get by walking a field. By touching the soil. Feeling the wind. Listening to the insects and seeing the life that teems in the soil. Seeing the plants growing, the placement of the seeds and the rewards of harvest is not something to relegate to a data map or daily report. Those have their place, to be sure, but they are tools. Tools of the farmer. Tools of those who love this work. Trust me if you don’t love it you won’t be doing it for long!


This poem is dedicated to all those men and women who farm, the generations past and those coming up today. Never forget your roots, they run deep in ag and will keep you on good ground for growing!