Thursday, September 13, 2012

Non-smoking area...

The Bitteroot Valley is hosting another wreck of a forest fire west of Hamilton. People have had to evacuate their homes, live in shelters, take their small animals to the humane society and their large animals to the fairgrounds. And the air is barely breathable, with ash floating to settle on you or your car after only minutes.

But when the rain finally comes, and it must, and soon, the smoke will clear. We will see devastation in all it's sweeping, bleak ugliness. Until snow arrives to cover it up. Then next spring will wash dusty ash and burnt debris off the hills and mountains into the muddy river, making an organic soup whose main ingredient is carbon.

The sun on August 11, 2012 -2:00 p.m.
Green grass will grow, but the black trunks will remain, stark, naked, sad. Brush will fill in quickly, berry bushes and alders. Young trees thrive on the carbonized soil and, by the next year, will be six inches tall. And nature will replenish herself, as she always does.

Unless man, excited by the suddenly exposed ground, decides another subdivision is in order, forgetting that Montana, in all her beautiful glory is not a non-smoking area.