Setting My House in Order
Cold again. I took a good walk in the woods, watching the patterns of water in my quiet favorite creek. Then walked up and down in the sheltered place where we used to go for Christmas trees, thinking about life and death—and how impossible it is to grasp the idea that one must die. And what to do to get ready for it! When it comes to setting my house in order, I seem to have no ideas at all.
In the evening, stood for about fifteen minutes on the porch watching deer, etc., through the field glasses. The deer, five of them, were out by the brush piles beyond my fence, barely a hundred yards—less perhaps—from the hermitage. Hence I could see them very clearly and watch all their beautiful movements—from time to time they tried to figure me out, and would spread out their ears at me, and stand still, looking, and there I would be gazing right back into those big brown eyes and those black noses. And one, the most suspicious, would lift a foot and set it down again quietly, as if to stomp—but in doubt about whether there was a good reason. This one also had a stylish, high-stepping trot routine which the others did not seem to have. But what form! I was entranced by their perfection!
March 6, 1966, VI.25