The air has been heavy for the past two days. The smell was from a thicket of woods undergoing some less supernatural form of spontaneous combustion. Despite the trees crumbling beneath the dry soil, the smoke is nothing like the smell of a campfire. It is agonizing. The trees’ corpses breaking under the pressure of the flames. It smells of rough skin, not bark. At night, the aromas of autumn overcome us all, but in the morning I wake to not dew or a cool breeze, but itchy eyes and burning lungs. The smoke stretches for miles, and we all wonder when it will end.
Last night, riding in the passenger seat after a late night in a warm apartment, lights could be seen high above the road, and sirens pierced a second hole in my ears. The pitch was unbearable, and the lights were blinding. The ladder on the fire truck shook in a frenzy of crisis. There was yet another fire, not wild, but undeterred by a barbecue shack nearby.
“What’s on fire?” Chelsea asked me later that night. I told her; she merely laughed. “I don’t even know how that place is still in business, it’s always catching on fire.”
But I still consider it a conspiracy, selfishly. I should not have to wake to sirens because of careless managers. My retinas should not burn because wild fires and smoke were not enough to draw firemen to their positions. The words “you’re amazing” ring in my head, and a wild fire grows inside me, too. It is more than coincidence–as I am burning from the inside-out, as is my world.
This should be a fantastically romanticized occurrence of events, but I just want to keep it to myself–this is one thing with which I do not want to infect the world. I believe in spreading the love, but a general love for and to the world. My love should be my own. I want to hold the fire in my hands and never let it spread wild. I want to keep it in a lantern and turn it on and off whenever I please–held up in a dark room for myself to enjoy. Instead, the rest of my world is burning to the ground, spiritually and physically, as I am romantically.
I could change my mind about surrealism and fall into a belief it is a natural reflection of my state of being. I am not sure if it is fair or rational to assume it, as if I believe myself the center of the world, though, within my own perspective, which I rather enjoy keeping, it is my world. The wild fires are spreading because of passion, passion they feel, same as I. The trees could be talking, whenever they witness what we share. You and I and everyone else, embracing and laughing and quite fanatically jumping for joy at every smiling word. The heat of every moment could be eating everything alive from the inside-out. And as such, the firemen are never without jobs, and I am without sleep. But I stay up thinking about what keeps my flame lit, while the rest of the world burns with me.