Logs in the Basket

Logs are frozen
to the touch,
land in the wicker basket
with a thud.
Dusty damp coal
fills the hod
and newspaper crowns
wait to light
kindling in the grate.

As yesterday’s news
goes up in smoke,
flames roar to life
in our inglenook.

Kim M. Russell, 14th December 2020

My response to dVerse Poets Pub Quadrille: In the Inglenook

Linda is back this Monday to host the Quadrille from her inglenook. Yes, we are writing poems of 44 words exactly, excluding the title and including the word ‘Inglenook’.

Linda has included a definition, although I didn’t need one as we have two inglenooks in our house, both inhabited by log burners, one of which is working. She has also shared poems by Wilbur D. Nesbit, John Betjeman and Mary Ruefle.

47 thoughts on “Logs in the Basket

  1. This is exquisitely drawn, Kim! The image of yesterday’s news going up in smoke puts me in the mind of “bygones be bygones,” and new beginnings taking shape via inglenook! 💝💝

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My pleasure is to read The Times on a Saturday, the only day we have a paper delivered, My favourite part is the Saturday Review. Davis gets a paper at work, the Daily Mirror for the sports pages and the quick puzzles on his lunch break, – in my opinion, a waste of time but great for lighting fires!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, so beautiful and freeing. Burning those reminders of yesterdays, that itself can bring closure. Along with, figuratively, memories that may haunt. A brilliant piece that captures the darkness in winter, then the light that ignites when we learn to let go of the past. I can relate to that so much! Beautifully written and especially stirring.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Sounds like you have been a bit of a firestarter–frozen wood, coal, and kindling wrapped in yesterday’s news. The piece warms me just reading it.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Fire isn’t fire until it’s blazing; until it’s infernoville, and lasts only for the early (non-dying) embers, and you capture that perfectly here KR. Paper and kindling don’t count, but you can’t get to Inlenookia without them…Thoroughly enjoyed this one!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Helen. When we first moved in there was only one inglenook in the kitchen, until we discovered one bricked up in the dining room. Sadly, the company we paid to install flues and log burners did a very poor job. We had to replace the one in the kitchen and the year before last when we were eating a meal with daughter, son-in-law and grandson, the other one cracked and is now condemned. We hope to get an electric heater in there soon.


  5. Great term “newspaper crowns” and I know exactly what you mean. I like how yesterday’s news burns up to keep you warm. Those kinds of stoves take constant tending and a steady supply of fuel. Nothing beats the heat they put out though.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Tricia. 🙂 I am the log-basket filler and fire lighter in our house – my husband has trouble getting fires started and then forgets about them so they always go out. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no pyromaniac!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. For many years we’ve had a wood-burning furnace so I can relate to this, Kim! But I’ve never burned coal…only wood, cobs and newspapers. We say the wood warms us three times….and this fire-starter poem warms my heart 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

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