Thursday, September 17, 2009


There is not a single cloud in the sky and the air is crisp and clean after a long night of rain. The building are glowing gold in the sunlight. I can smell a bit of fall in the air. It is not far off, now.


A. and I worked part of the weekend getting the firewood ready for the winter, but took breaks to watch the Wyoming/Texas game on Saturday and the Vikings on Sunday. There was more lounging around this weekend than we originally planned. There is still much work to be done to be ready for winter.

It is work that I enjoy, even if it is hard enough labor to make me sweat and ache. It just feels, I don't know, honest, to labor over the felled trees. It makes me appreciate all of the resources and energy - and not just my own - that goes into keeping me and my family warm throughout the winter. Hell, it is not just keeping us warm. We have weeks at a time where the temperature does not reach 0 degrees. These trees are ensuring we survive the winter.

The primal nature of this chore gets into my head, my muscles, my bones.


In a small way, I was disappointed that A. and I did not get a deer last fall when we went hunting together. True, I was anxious as all hell to be around when he killed an animal. I did not know how I would handle it. I am sure there would have been much blubbering and snotty blowing of my nose. But, I knew how I wanted to handle at least one aspect of it.

I want to be present at the moment of harvest. I want to kneel next to that neigbhor of mine and say a prayer of thanks, of gratitude. I want to voice my inteniton to God, to the Universe, to use this animal's life for good. That the energy and life that this animal has given to me will be invested in doing good for all my neighbors, human and non-human. That this animal will fuel my actions throughout the next year, and out of respect for this animal's life I will try my best to live an honest life. A life that contributes to the world. A life lived in an effort to to take for granted that my days on this earth are sustained by the death of others. That there is a balance out there; death fueling life, whether it animal deaths or the deaths of plants, of microorganisms, whatever. That I try to respect that balance in how I live my life.

I guess I hope that by voicing my prayer it will serve as a reminder of how I want to live my life.


It is much easier to understand the energy, the life, the deaths, that go into my survival, my life, through the handling of the firewood and the animals.


  1. This is beautiful. I love how intentionally you live your life.

  2. Thanks, Jess. Well, it is how I TRY to live my life. I often fail more than I succeed, but so it goes.

  3. This made me want to chop some wood!

    And it reminded me of my realization upon actually meeting hunters when I lived in Maine that hunting doesn't have to be a blood "sport", it can actually be the most conscious, and conscientious, way to be a meat eater.

  4. Back when I was a farmboy it was easier to see that connection between dinner and cute, fuzzy animal. You don't get that as much in our regular office-to-grocery-store life.

    I did hunt when I was growing up but haven't since. And I know that hunting has declined since then, but I do feel/hope that hunters today, at least in the US, do understand more that they are harvesting a being and not just having some fun.

    Another thing that also makes me ok with hunting as a way of controling game populations, even if I don't practice it anymore, is that if I were an animal, I'd rather go out with a bullet than freezing or strarving, which are really the only other two options.

  5. You know, whenever you talk about things like this, I always think how peaceful and thoughtful your life seems. Have a great weekend.

    - LoriD (for some reason I can't post under my Google username)


Sorry for the word verification. Spambots have found this little blog!