The green after the inferno

West Texas - grass returns after wildfire near Abilene (photo by Sheila Scarborough)

For all of us in the central US (and other places) who are suffering from drought, a small reminder that the rains will come again….

This photo was taken outside of Abilene, Texas, after fires burned up thousands of acres of nearby ranch and farm land.  I know that wildfires are not the same as drought, but let me tell you, that blackened part is pretty much how we’re feeling these days.

As my friend Jen Wojcik jokes, “Hey, Satan called. He wants his hell back.”

Here in Texas, we are re-reading Elmer Kelton’s landmark book The Time it Never Rained about the “drought of record” in the early 1950’s, just to see how much worse it can get.

As we enter 70+ days of triple-digit heat, and I find dead birds in our bird bath, our yard withers despite judicious watering, the famous local Mexican free-tailed bats come out earlier and hunt further for nonexistent bugs, our fence is starting to fall over because the desiccated ground has pulled away from the concrete supporting the fence posts and I’m finding ants all the way upstairs in their determined search for water….

I can’t do much more than hope that this isn’t permanent, and that the green will return.

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