It takes dry wood to keep the fire
going, cutting, splitting and the timely
delivery to glowing coals to stay warm—

the archaic rituals of individualists:
the harvests of backyard gardens,
the battles with weeds and pests

that win eventually. We choose
the hard way to save a dime, we say,
spend two-bits for a nickel raise.

Throwbacks to the old ways:
shovel, hoe and axe—hand-to-hand
combat with this earth, this dirt.

Small accomplishments that will
not change the world. We grow wild
to live among the foes we know

in this life and the next. Cordwood
warming moments, fruit wood
tasting of independence.


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