Entries in wood pile (1)


Wood pile

Through the winter months when my friends are going to the gym, taking yoga or pilates, I’m cutting wood. It’s my gym, my church, my movie night. Last year I had a few trees taken down so that from the top of the ridge where my house perches I have a pocket view of the Catskill Mountains. I felt badly about cutting what were mostly beech trees, so like the hunter who decides to take a deer and eat every part: heart, liver, thighs and knees, I decided I should use this wood. The difficulty is that these trees are down a hill and all I had was a little handsaw.

I cut my logs about eight inches in diameter, and about 36 inches long (it is never, however, this precise). This part of the cutting is the most satisfying, a sort of meditation on an outsized game of pick up sticks. What will drop easily? What will I have to support, and what will fall if I take this piece here? I pile these in one place and carry them up the hill. It was during this phase that a young friend, Remi, pointed out I should be using a better saw. A little research later and I had a Silky Katanaboy, a work of art that slices through wood like butter.

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