A guy has been picking apples all day up on a ladder. He hasn't picked every last apple, but night is coming and he is tired. He remembers the strange vision he had that morning when he looked at a bunch of grass through a sheet of ice he removed from a drinking trough. It looked like the world was melting, and then he dropped the piece of ice. He may or may not be falling asleep as he has these thoughts. He thinks of how he will dream about apples.
He's getting sick of harvesting apples – there are so many of them, and he has to be careful not to let them fall. If an apple falls, it has to be chucked into the heap to use for making cider. Those cider apples are considered almost worthless.
He imagines that these thoughts about worthless apples and dropping things will haunt his sleep. He wonders if it will be a long, deep sleep, like the hibernation of a woodchuck, or whether it will just be a normal "human" sleep.