This winter we had four large trees cut down on our property to enhance our views of the valley. I had mixed feelings as I watched the trees come down. These lovely old Sassafras, probably in their 20s to 30s, had seen so much change. A wild mountain when they were saplings, it’s now peppered with homes, from the early log cabins to modern McMansions. Today we cut large pieces of them into firewood. While they’ll never again sway in the wind, provide habitat to the birds and squirrels and shade our yard, their carbon will come full circle, provide warmth and beauty, and return to the earth by virtue of our fire pit.