This is a fictionalized account (from my book Seasonal Roads published by Wayne State U.) of a fire that nearly burned down our camp (home) and 35 acres.:
Thou art Earth, Thou art Water, Thou art Fire, Thou art Air, Thou art the Void, Thou art consciousness itself, Thou art life in this world; Thou art the knowledge of self, and Thou art the Supreme Divinity.
Fire is one of the four ancient elements; male Fire and Air at odds, always, with female Earth and Water.
Fire cleanses, they say.
That’s what she’d told herself as she sat outside in her lawn chair and despite the fact the Fire Department had told her to evacuate twenty minutes ago. “Take what’s on your back and in your hands and go,” they’d said. Jane had looked down at the periwinkle coffee cup in one hand and the Newberry News in the other. “Fuck you,” she answered because she knew nothing less would get their attention.
They told her they had other people to get out and she said, “Then you better get movin.’” “We can’t guarantee your safety,” they said, and she said, “Can you guarantee it if I leave? Will you put that in writing?”
That’s something she’d like to take to the bank.
They left her looking at the sky to the southwest. They yelled out the window to her that she was a fool while their tires spun in the loamy sand.
It’s her mother Aissa’s camp who is downstate visiting a friend.
Jane considers packing up some of her mother’s belongings, family pictures, or even her grandmother Norna’s bamboo fishing rod, but decides to hose down the house instead. The hose isn’t long enough to reach all the way around it, but she starts squirting the wood siding, the water spraying anemically 2/3 of the way up. The pump is a 1/2 horsepower 110, 60 Hz well jet pump. The well is a 2″ sand point driven casing down to 65′ below ground level, and Aissa could use a new well. Since it’s been cloudy the last few days, no solar, she’s not sure how long the batteries will hold out. A generator would have come in handy, that’s for damn sure, Jane thinks, but it’s not hooked to the propane: solar enough for one person in the summer.
Jane has been here for weeks. She’d needed to get away from Alex to gain some kind of perspective between them. He’d objected, but she’d gone anyway. She thinks about her own ranch, knows it’s not in the path of the impending inferno, and keeps hosing down her mother’s place, a place that had once belonged to her grandmother Norna years ago. She wonders for a moment what Norna might be doing at this moment in an alternate migration, but lets it go. After all, Norna might be dead in another world, too; some migrations she never existed in at all and neither did Jane—the possibilities always endless.
Time is like that.
Now, in this migration, John’s Bronco rolls into the driveway.
“Where’s Alex?” Jane asks, referring to her husband. John is his best friend.
“I’m not certain,” he responds tactfully. She knows he doesn’t want to tell her that Alex has no desire to be there.
There is nothing between John and Jane.
Nothing except love.
Happy Wednesday, all. I meet with the insurance salesman today and then cooking some carnivore fried chicken in the air fryer. Let me know if you’d like to read some more fiction. I’ll post the other parts of this story coming up.