There’s nothing like the heat that burns off from a wood stove fire.
The bright red glow and crackling wood is anyone’s desire.
I don’t mind sawing down a tree that’s completely brown and dead.
So, while cleaning up the forest I can keep my wood stove fed.
And getting up, twice every night, to stoke the fire with wood,
will teach you to be vigilant as anybody should.
Last year seemed such a long one, talking ‘bout the cold and snow.
From the wood shed to the wood stove wore three holes in brand new soles.
And to top it off I plowed the ever-falling snow each day,
while stoking up the wood stove kept me hostage, you could say.
It must have been a Sunday, after eating eggs and toast.
I heard a noise so loud, jet engine decibels almost.
I hurried to the wood stove feeling comatose in stare.
And there a roaring chimney fire was sucking up the air.
I was barely post-op surgery. A brand new total knee.
So, climbing up the ladder was impossible for me.
My sister’s husband got here faster than town gossip flies.
He was soon to be a firefighter hero in my eyes.
Our ladder was a tall one, thirty feet from ground to top.
Yes, our firefighter climbed it fast as water soaks your mop.
He carried up a bucket. Dumped water down the chimney hole.
The steam shot like a geyser but the fire still held control.
He tossed the bucket down to me. I missed. It hit the ground.
The bucket broke to pieces. Now no time to fool around.
So, I ran inside the garage I’d hung a bucket on a nail.
But instead, I found our Sunday turkey brining in the pail.
I tossed the turkey and the brine, in panic, way up high.
And wondered, in confusion, why the turkey didn’t fly.
I tied the bucket to a rope. Now we had a fire aide.
And finally doused the fire with our two-man pail brigade.
Thank heaven for our brother who’ll stay calm and use his head.
Who starts the day before the sun and early out of bed.
I can’t forget the chimney fire. It caused me such a scare.
So, now I’m burning propane while sitting in my easy chair.
(Bryce Angell’s father was an outfitter and guide for 35 years, and Bryce was there to shoe and care for the horses and help him do the cooking. Bryce is from Idaho and still rides into the Tetons, Yellowstone and surrounding areas. His poems are mostly of personal experience. He can be reached at email@example.com.)
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