Ephemerality in the woodpile

February in Maine means stoking the fires several times a day. These days it’s just one woodstove, but still a fair amount of wood moves from woodshed to house every day. Each piece has some specifics, like species (mostly maple, oak, birch) and mass (a 15 lb knot burns longer than 3 5 lb sticks), and of course there’s an art to placement and draft adjustment. In addition, there’s the occasional personality who takes refuge in the carefully-stacked woodpile. I choose to think of such visitors as looking forward to the transcendence that immolation brings, and to their further lives into which their constituent atoms are recycled (and one might apply the same expectation to other forms of organic life too…). So here are some of today’s potential immolatees:

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