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The Split 


Brian G. Angevine

2005

 

Contemplating the grain

Concentric rings from edge

To center heartwood.

The rough outer bark

In sharp contrast

Convoluted with fissures

Ruddy red hue in the

Deep vales with

Darker brown weathered

Threads veining the

Outer surfaces.

Thicker bands mean

Wetter years with

Great growth potential.

Thin segments denote

The hard years that

We all face

Periodically.

The smell of pine

Fragrant in the morning

Chill.

Beads of sap

If frozen over

Centuries would

Become precious

Amber

Instead wastes its

Future potential as

Merely sticky substance

To bond to hands

And collect dirt.

Baseball players sometimes

Were called “OUT”

When pine tar

Clumb too high.

Today the beads

Glisten in the morning sun

Awaiting their fate

At my

Hands.

 

 

Frosty air

Makes breath visible

But no jacket is needed.

My task will warm

Twice

Once while working

Again when consumed.

Testing the heft

Of the axe in

My hands

I need gloves

Now that

Calluses have dissipated.

Shrugging shoulders

Once powerful

In youth

Now less so,

A little warm up

Some stretching.

Check the surroundings

Watch for things

That might catch the axe

Possibly causing disaster.

Test the footing

And the leg position

To prevent possible

Accidents.

Slowly raise the axe

Take careful aim

Focusing the one eye

On a possible fault

In the wood.

The perfect

 wood.

The beautiful

 wood.

The fragrant

 wood.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ponderosa stand all around

A few Pinon mixed in

Quantified at one time

Now fewer because of

Drought and disease.

This big tree was

Difficult to bring down

But now awaits its fate.

Putting my back and legs

Into the swing

The axe descends

Flashing in the sunlight

 Extra oomph from the

Shoulders and wrists

Drive the blade deep

Into the grain.

If aim and

force

Are enough

The log splits

Into two pieces

With one blow.

Usually though

Many more strikes

Are needed.

I take pleasure

In exerting this

Power

And finesse

To prepare for

Winter.

 

 

326 Words

124 Lines

Brian G. Angevine

9290 Oakcrest

Lenexa KS 66227

913-961-3823

brianangevine@mac.com