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The Light by the Barn
By William Stafford

The light by the barn that shines all night
pales at dawn when a little breeze comes.

A little breeze comes breathing the fields
from their sleep and waking the slow windmill.

The slow windmill sings the long day
about anguish and loss to the chickens at work.

The little breeze follows the slow windmill
and the chickens at work till the sun goes down—

Then the light by the barn again.


In Robert Bly, ed., The Darkness Around Us Is Deep: Selected Poems of William Stafford
(New York: HarperCollins, 1993)