A cold autumn fog rolls into the plateau just after church on Sunday
Low clouds tumble over the tree tops like smoke from a hidden chimney.
Needles and leaves rain down in a never ending shower of fall colors and smells.
The gutters need attention, as does the lawn, but I have other things in mind.
The logs lay before me in a heap. Tangled and twisted, the gnarlier the better.
Scattered behind me the tools of my trade wait patiently knowing that each will have their turn.
The maul is chosen first, it's long handle showing the wounds of seasons past.
With a scared blade that reveals in it's bluntness, proud of every scar it has earned.
Anticipation is relieved as my first swing is released.
I dip into a deep squat just prior to the deep throated 'chunk' of connection.
Missing the vein is moot as the power of follow through overcomes the wood's will to remain whole.
Chips fly as logs fall and the maul continues on not caring that the job is done.
Working the handle to and fro the stubborn tool reluctantly releases its grip from the base log.
Not wanting to lose on ounce of momentum I reconsider the usual plan.
The base log stands before me, its pitted grimace mocking my intentions.
The first whack is denied the soothing sound of splintering oak and barely forms a crack.
Sweat begins to form on the tip of my tested resolve.
A new grip is created while a wider stance is chosen.
The blade faces up its eyes surely closed in regrettable shame.
For now the hammer must come down for the wedge is making an early debut.