I was doing my best to be very quiet as I started a fire in the fireplace. Katrina was still asleep. I had some wood stacked beside the stone wall in the living room. Carefully, as the flames rose, I adjusted the logs so none would roll out, and then stood on the hearth, my back warmed by the fire. The morning sky was just beginning to lighten.
The slight scent of burning wood, especially the one piece I had added of seasoned cedar, seemed to dance with memories of other fires: open campfires in the wilderness, my boyhood experience of roasting marshmallows, the times my dad burned the potatoes and how charcoaled the skins were as we ate them anyway.
There’s always something about an open fire that brings peacefulness. I know that poets write about the magic of sitting before a crackling fire. Well, I should have known better—the cedar log began to crackle and pop. Yep, it sounded like firecrackers going off! The cats were no longer sleeping and purring, for the world was waking up. As concerned as I was not to disturb Katrina, she just slept on, dreaming about fairies, gnomes, and whatever dances in her head.
By the time she arose, I was sitting enjoying an organic coffee with chaga mushroom mixed in it. The fire was down to glowing embers, and it was time for me to bring in some more firewood. Then it was free to dance as riotously and joyfully as it wanted! I threw on several more pieces of dry cedar to mix with the hickory. The flames laughed, as did Katrina when I told her about how quiet I had tried to be.