Because it has been about 5 weeks since it last rained, I have been noticing several roadside fires ignited by the friction of the dusty brown grass against the wiry brush. The flames ravish the land leaving only the high standing cactus alive while the rest of the previously beige landscape gives way to strikingly black earth giving the road from Pozos to San Miguel the feel of a patchwork quilt. As I drove home yesterday, ipod dead, and my sisters tired of speaking, I reflected on these natural fires. The prairie grass and dry leafless bushes were ready to be wiped out, simply waiting for the desert wind to ignite the burn. I find these fires have a somewhat spiritual significance and they resonate with me especially at the juncture in my life, as things haven't exactly been peachy in the last week.
To me, these fires represent a need for change, as I learned in my environmental english class at the University of Minnesota, fire is a source of renewal. A human who has been going through a rough patch could see them as a a wild means to an end, that end being letting go of the past and forging onward. The peaks of newly green grass sprouting up from the black earth is a reminder of the fresh starts evoked by letting issues of the past go up in smoke and eventually turn to the air we breathe in and exhale with out even a thought.
So as I drove I observed these strikingly green blades beginning their new journey and I began to feel oddly at peace with the events of the last week, month, year. It seemed only fitting that the fires were consuming the fields at years end, as if to say to those who will listen to the brilliance of nature "the year is over, make peace with it and let it burn."
Happy new year to all.