Miracle Trees

Photo by Benjamin Lizardo on Unsplash

‘The National Forest Service declared the small patch of unburnt trees in a fire ravaged section of the BWCA a miracle. There’s been many theories, but none seem plausible. Scientist will take samples and examine the area for clues as to what spared these trees from destruction.’ The reporter quickly moved on to the next headline.

Rubbing the stubble on my chin, I turned to Mom. “What do you make of that?”

I had to repeat myself three times before she understood. I wish she’d get her hearing checked. That was reason I spent the last three days at her home. As the fire had crept closer, she refused to temporarily stay with me two hours straight south. She might not hear someone telling her to evacuate. If she did hear them, she might stay out of sheer stubbornness.

“Don’t know. We live in weird times. Maybe aliens put a dome over those suckers. Bet they find nothing. Waste of our tax money tromping around in there.”

These days she moved a bit slower and was more cynical, but one thing hadn’t changed. Her eighty-year-old mind was still crystal clear. She laid her head against the pilled afghan on the back of the couch and closed her eyes. I stood up and quietly took two steps towards the kitchen.

“You hungry, Mikey,” she said without opening her eyes.

How does she do that? “I was going to call an old classmate who works with the forest service. Now that the fire has been contained several miles from here, I’m antsy to get out. Maybe he would take me to see the ‘miracle’ trees.”

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