Several weeks ago, I walked home in the daylight. Reluctant to leave the mild fresh air, I decided to explore the yard. We moved in December, and several feet of snow has kept us from taking advantage of the half-wild slope below our house, and the ramshackle shed that perches there. The snow is receding now, and I trotted down to poke my nose into the little building. It smells like skunks live there under the patchy floorboards, and mice too, judging by the droppings. An old lawnmower sprawls out from piles of junk left by other tenants, occupying most of the standing room. Despite this, or maybe in some ways because of it, the whole place had the feeling of a rough hewn treasure. In essence, it would make a good fort. A secret shelter apart from the quotodien house, where I could stand dreamily at the old potting bench, tending seedling onions and gazing at the lake through wobbly glass. When it warms up some, I'll clean it out and claim my territory, so long as the skunks don't mind my visits.