we could see it all the way from our neighborhood. a great dark plume, anchored to the ground, almost like a twister. i know it’s smoke. he argues with me, says it’s a cloud. the sky is a morning grey and the from this far, the “cloud” seemed only five shades darker. was it possible? a thundercloud this close to ground?
as we’re ready to cross the bridge, we see the police blockade. it’s smoke alright. still unable to tell where it’s coming from exactly, but we can see the black tendrils, like a foggy giant squid coming from the base of whatever the building was.
i turn on the news hoping to hear something. hoping no one was hurt. but it was the international segment. 240-some people died in a Brazilian night club fire, death toll still counting, only one exit. people couldn’t get out.
locally, run-down building in Abbotsford in danger of fire, accident involving fire in Langley.
what is this? the day of the fire god?
i think to myself, good thing i have a river in my name. good thing my main element is fire. “three-weak,” i’m told. good thing my life is balanced, but i warn my parents anyway, beware the fire god’s wrath today. you can smell it in the air.