The Twice Warmed


Continuing my 40-gratitudes series, I want to talk about wood. Specifically, wood heat.

For those of you unfortunates who live by furnace alone, let me explain about wood heat. If you are chilled—as in cold down to your bone marrow—nothing warms you better than wood heat. If you have a wood stove with a glass front, you can indulge yourself in the ancient ritual of fire-watching. In fact, fire circles have inspired more stories than any other natural phenomenon used by humankind.

Then there’s the scent of woodsmoke on a cold morning as you walk to the end of the driveway to get the morning paper.

Nearly everything about wood heat involves ritual from the cutting and splitting of trees to the meditative state you can achieve while stacking to opening up the top of a wood stove to see the pulsing orange glow of the embers inside.

Yep, I do concede it’s work intensive, and you end up vacuuming around the stoves a lot. But I love wood heat, and when the power goes out, I am reminded once again of the fragility of fossil fuels and the benevolence of trees.

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