Ablaze

From a Distant Fire

6/27/2012

Bone-dry.  Athirst and parched, the land is burning.

Wildfire skims across a lake of forest, skipping along the ground like a rock on water.  It seeps, unconstrained, as spring floods do elsewhere.  It is furious and determined and cruel and stubborn.  Unstoppable, it is fueled and fed generously and runs unchecked until all is stripped and black and gone. 

Gripped

It is fire born of the union of hotter temperatures and an arid winter and beetle-killed pine and overgrowth.  It is fire that ignores homes and lives, bullying those drawn by dreams to a place of beauty and risk, people who settled into hopeful and eager lives despite the outside chance of heartbreak.  It is fire that thumbs its nose at slithering development and challenges that view of progress.  It is fire that comes with fair warning and the admonition of cyclical drought that seems only to worsen. 

Nearly

At day’s end, there is a defiant glimpse of grandeur.  The sky bleeds color and through the haze the sunset speaks to the incredible energy that is doing great harm. 

Its whisper says that it is not terribly far off. 

But far enough. 

Its echo scolds.  And reminds us to pay attention

Day’s End

33 thoughts on “Ablaze

  1. What terrible power unleashed. What deceptive beauty your lenses captured. Frightening and dangerous. Please do not send pictures of the flames unless you hire a plane to fly you over them!!

  2. I’ve been thinking about you when I see this story in the news. Your words & photos are amazing. Strangely compelling considering that we’re looking straight at destruction. Still, I can’t look away.

  3. You’ve certainly captured the wicked and determined personality of that conflagration, as well as the teasing beauty of raw nature as it traveled through your lens.

  4. Those fires are overdue by decades. It’s the best way to rejuvenate the forests. It’s lucky so few people have died. It makes me glad we live in the jungle now, where we may drown or be eaten by an alligator, but we’ll never burn alive.

  5. I was just telling someone over the weekend about the indescribable color you seem to capture in your photographs. It’s as though you’re on another world.

    I’m glad to hear the fires are finally under control, and that you’re out of harm’s way.

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