Dawn Promislow
A red barn

Sleeting snow, a blading wind and a whitened farm, wood-fenced, in deepest
weather, I saw a distant dun-coloured horse, arched and arching neck and back
against the white-white sweep, the long white sweep. He stood steadfast on the
sweep in his dun coat, eyes closed, closed against the bladed cold, wind ice-
whitening the biting air, and walked across the broad and broadening sweep, thick-
haunched, I hunched into my own ice coat, breathing, then he standing, still. I went
my snow and blasted way. Perhaps he went into the red-roofed barn at night, but I
only saw him outside, outside on a wide white sweep, I do wonder about those long
and bitter nights, no lights or warmth or salvation (just a red barn) nigh.


Dawn Promislow was born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, and has lived in Toronto since 1987. Her debut short story collection, Jewels and Other Stories (TSAR Publications, 2010), was longlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award 2011 and was named as one of the 8 best fiction debuts of 2011 by The Globe and Mail (Canada). She is writing her second book, a novel.