A BUCKET OF PINECONES
Getting ready for new fires in the just-cleaned woodstove, went at evening to fill the bucket with pinecones from the shed, out to the big bag of them still left from the ones I picked up on Little Pine Beach a couple years ago, my feet going quiet out back trying not to startle the two young does nibbling at the big meadow across the road as I saw from the big side window a few moments before-- I don’t think they can see me here, and I’m downbreeze, but they might hear me, so I try to sound like a bunch of pinecones in a big bag in a shed.
Then trying even harder to stay quiet while slowly pouring out those years-dry pinecones that whisper as they go out of a big chunky bag into the old iron bucket just waiting to be noise, and then in that autumn evening light the surprise to me, so far from expecting the beauty that comes tumbling into the reddish bucket in the silvers, russets and other dun colors left behind by pine seeds long gone into the world; purpose fulfilled, the pinecones are still reaching-- openness their new beauty, they gather together without fuss, arrange themselves in elegance; I add some more on top, they’re still perfectly arranged. Then I add a handful more, just to see. You cannot mess up a bunch of pinecones.
Simple, sleek power they are, gathered there in a bucket in a twilight, fallen altogether in ancient understanding. One must take the time they call for, gaze at their perfection, try to see how they do it, being mostly space, but are we not the same-- it is something that knows us well, some ancient thing, far older than eyes, that life has made and light has painted, a glimpse from a now at what is always, about light and seeds, about hearts and moments, about deep stirrings of time in evenings of lives... pinecones in a bucket.