Tuesday, January 22, 2008
I say that the woodpile
cuts down street noise,
though that is not quite the truth.
When I was a kid, my grandfather
was in charge of the woodpile
for our cold Oregon nights.
He'd pick up logs on the beach
and (always with a hernia) load
them into his jeep
to cut them up with a 3 foot circular blade
attached to the power take-off
on the back of the jeep.
Then he'd split the wood with
a combination of an axe, a mallet,
and some hefty wedges.
I'd try to split the wood myself from time to time,
but never could do much damage to those logs.
For him, it was one way to
take care of those he loved.
I never asked him where he
learned to do the log splitting.
I wonder if that is something he did
growing up in Russia.
My log pile is a tribute to Milton,
my grandpa. The difference is
that we have a gas fireplace
with a remote control. And in
cold weather, lots of neighbors
visit us in their pickups
looking for wood.
"No, the wood is not for a sale,"
we tell them.
I tried (and failed) to convince my students that it was better to be able to appreciate a sidewalk than to own a yacht. With the sidewalk t...