The Plagued Parent

posts about surviving our children, the Baby Boomers who raised us, and everyone else with an opinion...

Cord Wood

He stumbled in from the wood pile dropping logs loudly, and fed the fire before insinuating himself under his wife’s blanket.

Wood warms you three times – he had read so – when you split it, when you stack it and when you burn it.

“Good god,” his daughter complained, “It’s too hot in here!” The dog snored at the hearth.

“It’s not hot,” his wife said as their daughter tossed her socks, “It’s cozy.”

With cold leaving his body he felt, as if for the first time, true comfort. “And,” he thought, settling in, “it warms you a fourth time.”


***** ***** *****

This 99 word story is a submission for Charli over at Carrot Ranch. The prompt was Cozy. In terms of disclosure the second line paraphrases David Mamet; he writes the same of living in Vermont and spoke of chopping wood for winter. Lately I’ve had to split quite a bit more than I’d have liked on account of not inspecting the delivery too carefully. That’s what I get. Anyway Mamet’s line comes to mind every time I lift the ax.

Updated: January 3, 2017 — 11:08 am


  1. I know that quote! We have cord wood still in the back of our truck from the wood we cut in Idaho. It felt terrible to leave it behind, and I know exactly that fourth warmth! Great use of cozy.

    1. Well, thanks Charlie. The Fourth Warmth sounds like a better title that the one I came up with. Didn’t see it before. Might go back and change it.

  2. Nicely written, with likable characters. I can feel the cozy.

  3. so good; nailed cosy!

  4. The joys of a real fire—as long as someone else is doing the donkey work 🙂

    1. I’m the only donkey here… Had to move near half a cord before the snow hit, 8-12″ predicted, so that meant 4 wheelbarrow trips. Any way the house is getting cold and I’m gonna go burn so of what I stacked. Thanks for reading Jane.

  5. Loved the story! Remembrances of home days!

    1. Glad you liked it Roger, thank you.

  6. Awe I could just picture this sweet scheme and feel the coziness of it all. Well done with the prompt. 😊

  7. I’m surprised wood only warms you three times with the number of times we handled it when we burned wood. Nothing like it though when you get the wood stove humming.

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