A year has turned since this blog began. The frosts return. The wood pullers are in the vineyards again, pruning and pulling last years dead wood. One winter we were the woodpullers, and these are my memories.
Tirer les Bois
White sky above, frozen earth below,
Parellels vernacular, stake and vine,
Shrill cry of hawk, circling high,
Tendrils entwine, resisting demise,
Soft notes of voice, drift by and by,
“On va tirer les bois”, “Let’s pull wood”.
Boots on, warm coat and hat, heavy duty garden gloves, then brave the cold, and wet of January. For the season of ‘pulling the wood’ has begun.
The pruner has left, but prepared my way. He has cut the vine, left two short spurs. But canes hang limp, while tendrils clasp to their wire support.
Start at the first vine, first row. Work one vine at a time. Grab the wood and pull, take one step, grab the wood and pull. My back soon aches, the vine slaps, my face stings, clay mud sticks to my boots, so I can hardly move. How many vines in a row? How many rows in a yard?
The sun breaks, warms my limbs, hat off, then coat. Time is swallowed in rhythm and quiet. Distraction come with sounds on breeze, a birdsong, a car engine, a voice somewhere. One more, and one more, then it’s done. Shake off mud, shake off work, time to trek home.
I have shared poems from one of the first posts on this blog, with this winters frost.