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Burning the Axe Handle

Cold Opening, Warmly Offered

"I begin. I have already thus begun a thousand lives." -- Rainer Maria Rilke.

Humbly, I present the Web log Burning The Axe Handle.

This is a claim-free, no-copyright zone for anyone to read or take for yourself.

In it, I will post ideas, plots, fragments, word images, and assorted inspirations I extract from years of notebooks. I have recorded hundreds, some more developed than others. They were once my ideas, but no longer.

In Burning The Axe Handle, I offer this kindling to all takers. Read for enjoyment or take what you want and make it your own.

Like that plot idea? Think that's a character you could use? Take it. Use it.

I ask a few simple things: first, if you take it, use it or at least try to. Not everything works out, I know. But if you do want one of my entries, let me know, and I can post that it has been claimed.

My expression in the photo I have initially chosen for this blog conveys the primary feeling I hope people will have as the experience my posts: some degree of surprise.

And since Burning The Axe Handle is, at its heart, about words, I also ask that if you claim one, make whatever donation you are able to the literacy program of your choice. If you don't know of one, send it to me and I will give it to the literacy program, in which I volunteer.

Check in whenever you want. I'll be posting daily, and I look forward to hearing from you. Enjoy this blog on its own, or consider it a writer's resource. I think these are good story ideas, but I have kept them to myself for too long. I give them freely.

This is Burning The Axe Handle.

Jan. 3

Snow falls from an overhang onto the shoulders and down the neck of a man's coat. He is irritated by the sudden cold feeling, but laughs at it as one of winter's small frustrations. Moments later, it happens again. Then again, but this time he is standing in the open. He pulls his coat closer. He feels it again, a sudden slap of clammy powder, but he does not know where it came from. The wind blowing? He feels it again, with no evident source: the same shocking, specific chill down his neck. He goes inside where it is warm and moments later feels it again. This continues through the day, then subsides and he goes to bed, relishing the warmth. He wakes, believing it a dream, and steps into the shower. Instead of the water's warmth, what he feels again is the pulsating slap of frozen snow on his neck. Kirby Neumann-Rea

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