Tuesday, June 26, 2012


My heart is heavy tonight.

[Saturday afternoon. My photo.]
While I was home this weekend, a wildfire started near Colorado Springs, about 30 miles from my home. The place is practically a tinderbox after a year of almost no precipitation, and a decade of below average precipitation.

By the time I left on Sunday, the air was acrid with smoke, and the mountains were hardly visible.

Today, the first homes went down. The fire has scorched tens of thousands of acres. Hundreds of firefighters have been working around the clock, trying to contain the flames, but to no avail. National news programs are lamenting the loss of tourism; my community is mourning its very destruction.
[Today. My sister took this from her office window.]

Hurricanes, tornadoes, tsunamis, blizzards-- all are predictable, measurable, definite. But a wildfire-- how can you know when it will start? When it will end? How you can fight it? What lives and livelihoods it will claim? Its power and boundaries are infinite, able to inspire both awe and fear.

I can't remember a time I've felt so helpless. My newsfeed is inundated with photos and prayers and fragments of facts. My throat is tight, my brain is buzzing with anxiety, and my lips can only form one-word prayers.

Rain. Help. Stop. Please.

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