Ice, snow, puddles, mud, bare grass. So many surfaces in the woods, not fit for snow shoes or skis or even boots, it’s such a mix of terrain. What I like about being outside today is breathing in the freshness of country air. Deep breaths of cold fresh. I am grateful and aware of how fortunate I am to walk and breathe in a smokeless landscape. Today I begin a revision of a short piece to take to my Monday night critique group. Will it be ready? Will it work? Company is arriving, soon, it’s my mother-in-law’s birthday dinner. I’ve gone as far as I can for today. But all the while I’m steaming green beans, boiling rice, setting the table, arranging the flowers, I feel the excitement and mystery of opening this story up again, considering what it’s about. Figuring out what it is that’s haunting me about this piece, what story I’m trying to tell about a walk in the woods that led me somewhere, psychically, that I was surprised and disturbed to go.