Although we lived in a solar home
when the power went out
we burnt a cord of wood
over four days to keep the house at fifty.

The cold plunged so far below zero
the dogs refused to go outside
and held it for the duration
faking sleep close to the cast iron stove.

I ventured outside long enough
to break ice on the wood pile
and retrieve logs
that I split for kindling in the basement.

Each night we spread sleeping bags
on the solar slab so its heat
and that radiated by the cast iron stove
kept us through the night.

On the fourth day the county snowplow
finally cleared the county road
which meant I had only a quarter mile more
to shovel for freedom.

copyright © 2023 Kenneth P. Gurney

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