Through all of the broken clouds, smoke hung like high fog across the Sound. My friend and I drove back and forth over the bridge and stared at a skyline that was faded and burning on the horizon. “It comes in waves, y’know,” I heard a stranger say. “Some days the fire’s smoke gets here, some days you forget anything is burning.” Miraculously, I don’t think I ever forgot that something was burning.
Our windows face up, and we can see smoke blending with the sunset behind the trees. The sun beats red and orange--you’d think it was dying.
Seattle is always sinking slowly, built on top of itself like all of us--just bricks and bricks of maturity and age glued over a foundation of vibrancy and youth, but we’re still happy, too. After a long day of watching another friend grapple with recovering from a 14-hour stint of alcoholic Thanksgiving, wandering through the city--in and out of record shops trying to decide between a gospel singer and the blues--he looks to the sky and says with a sigh, “And… Washington’s on fire.” It’s then that I know it’s about us, too. Alive and blissfully aflame about something.