Lisa Bondurant

My photo
I spend my time raising kids, gathering eggs, cutting wood, scoping out trees for tapping, making syrup in the last days of winter, watching my garden NOT grow in the summer, writing, wishing that there were more hours on the clock for sleeping.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Changing

A cabin on Gum Run
  The rains fell warm and steady, tapping like a dancer on the tin roof all through the night. The wind swirled through the oak trees above and rumbled the rafters. My five year old woke me in the night, his eyes big as he looked towards the ceiling.
"Why is it so noisy in this night," he asked?
"The seasons are changing," I told him. It was a comforting sound to me after the scorching forest fires and the long days of making syrup, but to him it was unsettling.
"Don't worry, you are a little chipmunk safe and snug in your log. Safe from cold rain and tugging winds."
He shook his head unsure.
"It is the night that is so scary though!," he whispered."The night is so dark and noisy and big.Why is the night so angry?"

Spring floods, Gum Run

"The night is not angry," I assure him. "It only seems like that.The mountains are happy tonight because they know spring is here. The only thing out there in the dark is your sugar trees that give us syrup, and the rivers that our sugar trees drink from, and the rains that feed the rivers, and the winds that our trees love to dance in.You will see in the light of day, now sleep little chipmunk. You are safe with your momma chipmunk, snug in your log, warm safe and dry."

  In the morning he asked to see the rivers that the sugar trees drink from. The rivers sweep past like excited chattering crowds, so fast as if they can not wait to see what lays around the next bend in the land and mountain.
"They are in a hurry," he tells me in amazement. "They must want to get to where they are going, because it must be a great place to get to."
He reached into the air as if trying to pull something unseen from it.
"But where is the snow? Will it come back soon? Will we make sugar today," he asked?
"No sugar today," I tell him. "No sugar making till next winter comes again. But now we will bottle the syrup."

      He shrugs as if this makes sense. "Bottling season," he announces. "First is the snow season. Then the sugar season. Now the bottling season. I think we have a lot of fun and yummy seasons in the mountains," he tells me. "I think the sugar trees love it here in the mountains, because they have lots of rivers to drink from and wind to dance in and because they think the night is not big and scary. Even if the chipmunk thinks it is."
Cooling bottles of syrup on the Home Comfort Range



Back creek said...

Very impressive!! I am awestruck that you made that much syrup on your stove! Snow season, sugar season, bottling season, wood-gathering season...

trail walker said...

...and when does the resting season start? Did I miss it again?...