Yesterday between rains and windstorms I was able to clear the gutters and downspouts of fir needles and birch leaves. The fig now is mostly bare. The stack of empty flowerpots continues to grow. I also cleared the front flowerbed, full of leaves and a few straggly blooms, gave it a good deep digging, and then another after adding manure. It was quite mild out, in the mid-fifties. Behind the house, the ground is thick with fir needles. This happens every fall. The wind cleans the trees, scatters all the spent needles and cones. The gutters catch the cones, the cones block the rain, and the gutters overflow. I go out again and again to clear them and the water runs freely once more. There is nothing I can do about it. The trees belong to the neighbors to the south. The storm winds come from the south. And if the trees were in our yard, what would I do? The same, of course. Unless they were a danger, I couldn’t bear to take them down. Besides, it’s good to be out in the weather, whatever it is. Sometimes I get soaked. Sometimes I shiver. The wind whistles through my ears — there’s nothing to stop it in between. And so, gutters or no gutters, I make a point of going out several times a day. The exposure does a body good. And you can see what it’s done for the mind. But the mind is part of the body. Just as the body is part of the dream. And what is the dream part of? Everything. And everything is good.