Home > The Crowd > On Seeing “Envy Barn” in the Real Estate Listings

On Seeing “Envy Barn” in the Real Estate Listings

October 13, 2010

by Amy MacLennan

It is what we want, though
we’ve never even heard of one,

a barn of spectacle, maybe,
structure out back that holds

it all. So what if a property’s price
vaults six figures at least?

Worth it, yes, more than any cow-house
or mere hall of stalls, the envy barn

sets a place apart. Not just
in the sticks, we’re talking suburbia,

and it holds quadruple the cattle,
twenty-nine tractors,

un-nameable fields of hay.
Windowed, solar heated, flash

air-conditioned, Berber carpeted,
self-cleaning with three teak-walled lofts,

titanium piping, and the tools there
won’t rust. That it doesn’t

have a cellar makes no difference:
in the envy barn, it is all about

up. It rises above the ground,
the neighborhood, above any god

of a realtor that might even think
of selling short. It is

sheer impossibility meant
to stand on land, and it is gorgeous

and it is enormous,
and it is what we want.


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Amy MacLennan has been published in Hayden’s Ferry Review, River Styx, Linebreak, Cimarron Review, Folio and Rattle. Her poems have appeared in the anthologies Not a Muse from Haven Books and Eating Her Wedding Dress: A Collection of Clothing Poems from Ragged Sky Press. One of her poems is available as a downloadable broadside from Broadsided Press.

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  1. Alex
    October 21, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    Finally found a few moments to begin to catch up on Q’s issue-in-progress and was terrifically pleased to find your “barn poem” with it’s crisply etched music, endlessly fascinated as I am with Americana. Bravo, Amy!

  2. Amy MacLennan
    October 23, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    Thanks so much, Alex!

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