He spent the morning watching time seasoned men fell trees. He admired how accurately they aimed the tall and heavy towers, bringing them down exactly where they wanted, sparing the homes from the looming menace and allowing sunshine to once again douse hardwood floors, rugs, and happy inhabitants. The way the ground trembled upon impact was thrilling.
Now, back home, his empty stomach laments over missed breakfast and demands meat. He fixes tuna fish, regretting having earlier sentenced his last celery stick to the compost bucket. He briefly considers going to the garden to obtain fresh celery, but is much too hungry for extravagances. Instead, he walks the plate of sandwich and potato chips to the front porch, rests in the old rocking chair, and resumes reading his novel. By the time the chapter is finished, he’s collecting potato chip crumbs on wet fingers, but since the wealthy old woman has been seducing her young house-guest behind the back of her sickly husband, he can’t help but read another chapter.
With lunchtime consummated, he vaguely wonders what to do next. His options are simple and revolve around wood: he could put the excess cedar siding undercover, he could finish making curtain rods from doug fir poles, or he could split some wood for tonight’s fire. Instead he gets up and sweeps the tan and ocher oak leaves from the porch. “What’s the rush?” he asks. It feels like the seasons, and time itself, are slowing down — dropping like leaves and thermometer mercury. He loves this porch nearly much as anything.
He sits back down and stares into the distance, not thinking as much as watching. Little flies dance like dust motes in the afternoon sun, stark against the forest green backdrop. He knows the rain is coming, and this could be the last sunshine for a while, but he’s okay. He feels okay all over, even under his skin, and he wonders why he hasn’t always felt this way. Is it a secret he’s discovered? If it is, it’s not the sort he could tell you in words and sentences. Heck, whatever it is, he doesn’t even know if it’ll be here tomorrow. Doesn’t know if it will persist past the setting of the sun.
He gets up to split some firewood, one of his favorite activities these days.