If walls could talk, the walls of a hundred-year-old farmhouse would tell history.. Built in 1923, solid wood, and the finest material money could buy. A farmhouse structured to settle on many acres surrounding to harvest and farm, a farmhouse foundation to riches of life.
My wood has witnessed so much over the years, including the bustle of family gatherings, the hum of conversations, and the laughter of children playing late into the night. I’ve seen birthdays, holidays, and Sunday afternoons. I remember long summer days when the wind rushed in through the open windows, carrying with it the smell of grass and lilac and honeysuckle. I have witnessed years of changes and watched as people moved away and others took their place.
The walls of this old farmhouse have seen much joy and sorrow over the years. For generations, families have come to gather and live, building memories around the fireside, laughter from the long tables, and the warmth of a hearty meal. But behind the walls, in the spaces between, the stories the walls tell can never truly be told. Perhaps in the rooms and hallways, voices are heard and memories fade in and out of existence, echoing throughout the structure. From newlyweds giggling and enjoying the days of love and naivety to families trying to make sense of tragedy, the walls saw and heard it all. As babies were born and a family started, laughter erupted, along with stories and arguments. Evil hands that covered innocent faces. Not every story would be humored or joyful. The walls carry dark troubled times as well.
Within these walls, church was held, class was taught, bank trading, and deals were done. Hard labor was manual and respect was taught. Values had priority in order to learn wisdom. Walls structured for challenges and hope, peace, and love. Weather would test its structure over time. Someone always came along and fixed me up making proper repairs.
On winter nights, cold and snow seeping in through cracks and gaps, the walls became an intimate theatre, displaying deep conversations between people in love, grappling with hope, heartache and deep questions. From the attic to the barn and beyond, if the walls could talk they’d speak of deep connections and loyalty between neighbors, help that came when least expected and giving when it wasn’t asked. These walls saw sleepless nights, painful memories and special occasions all become memories stored away forever, like so much dust and dirt tucked into every nook and cranny of this family home. The walls are strong, but their secrets still linger. Each generation is added to this story, creating new ones to replace the fading ones of years past. Though time passes and generations come and go, these walls are steadfast in their silence. But if they could talk, what stories would they tell?
The farm house had seen its share of joys and sorrows over the years. If the walls could speak, it would tell the story of families living through a devastating harvest failure. Struggling to make ends meet and make their land last. Late nights filled with sorrow and fear of losing their family’s legacy. But in the same breath, the walls would speak of the immense joy and love felt within these four walls. Through times of great celebration, it saw couples get married, grandchildren playing in the living room, and homemade meals enjoyed with family and friends.
Harvest failures, desperate hopes, tears and sweat, and the pain of the family members all weighed heavily on the old house. One could imagine the strained conversations held by the family members over whether or not they would make it through the season. There were surely times of deep sorrow, as members of the family had to let go of beloved parts of the farm as financial struggles worsened. And as the walls held in the past, they witnessed each successive generation gather together, trying their best to keep the old farm alive, their sweat and efforts creating an invisible bond between the generations, uniting them despite the distances of time. If the walls could talk, surely their voices would be those of perseverance and courage, ringing through the halls of the farmhouse and resounding in the memories of its inhabitants.
The stories would speak of hope and dreams, love and loss, faith and doubt. They would bring joy and pain, laughter and tears. For generations, these walls have held a unique place in this family’s lives, providing strength and shelter. Though the stories within may remain forever unheard, they remain held deep within the structure of this old farmhouse.
One hundred years, 2023 my structure has loosened, and the seeking noise of broken shutters, rattle with the wind. The farm has decreased as family sold to develop. New fancy houses are closing in. Those houses are top of the line, here surround, just an old farmhouse.
I am here, silently absorbing it all, like a repository for the collective memories of generations of families. I can only imagine what the walls of this old farmhouse would say if they could talk. Stories of heartache and happiness, successes and failures, hope and despair. And so I plead with you – don’t let development erase my history. Don’t tear me down. Keep me standing, so that I may continue to be part of this incredible journey. Renovate history with a little love and care.
This old farmhouse has so much history to share. If only the walls could talk? Please let this old farm house stand proud just as the history that lives within these walls.
Sadly, in today’s day and age, my structure may not be long for this world. I stand, empty and forlorn, for a development threatens to tear me down and rob my life of its history and memory. Don’t let it be! I am a testament to a life once lived and a living piece of history that shouldn’t be forgotten. Please save me and remember what I stand for.
*this is my original work, posted on vocal. This was written for a contest challenge. And I’m sharing it here on my blog. -Della Lonaker🦋