Standing in The Burn Pile


"Standing in A Burn Pile... " - Beth Adoette

There is something about ashes and the remains of a fire in the woods that interests me. I am not exactly sure what it is, but the attraction is very strong. Perhaps it is the beautiful blackness. Maybe it is the evidence of drama. It is certainly mystery. In fact it is exactly what I think mystery might look like. Over time, I have come to realize that my wanting to stand in the ashes is also a way to encourage myself and celebrate change. In the ashes, I stand as the final step in the process of change by simply being a witness to it.

Every year, the rarely seen caretakers of my favorite woods create burn piles of sticks and vegetation along the winding, mile long carriage path, presumably to help keep trails accessible, water views open, and other reasons I am not privy to. Then the piles sit for months, slowly drying out and waiting for their environment to become just right for the burn. Lots of waiting. It is a process.

Sometimes, I walk barefoot in these woods. If