Feed on

“The Barn at the End of Our Term” does a good job of introducing the element of strangeness early on. Some of the horses are actually dead presidents. ThisĀ is presented as fact. There is only a small window at the beginning of the story in which the reader wonders, is this a mentally ill horse who somehow believes himself to be president? (at least that’s what I wondered). The story is broken up into small labelled sections which take the reader through the aspects of these horses’ lives in a very clear and organized manner. “The Girl” was followed by an introduction of the girl, “The Barn” followed by a section on life in their barns, “The First Lady” followed by Rutherford’s search for his wife, “Dirt Memoirs” by their attempts to literally record their lives in writing in the dirt with their hooves, and so on in this nice straight-forward manner despite the strangeness of the actual content. The story left me wondering if there was a metaphor or a moral to it all; if there was, I don’t think it came across entirely. The idea seemed to be that to get to greener grasses you first need to let go of the idea of there being greener grasses, but I think this could have been better expressed by the horses remaining in their pastures and finding the pleasures in their new lives rather than leaping a fence and disappearing into oblivion.

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