Writober 10-13-2019 – Ash

The first song my son learned was Ring Around the Rosie when he was like two. When he dropped to his butt at the “all fall down” part, it was so cute. Even then, he was a little performer. I had no idea this song was about the Black Plague and the ashes were from the bodies they burned to stop the spread of disease. I guess. Maybe this was their version of a safety song for kids. How come we don’t have one these days about mass shootings? It could go viral. Someone’s Soundcloud could become really famous. Or on a tiktok account. On the ‘gram.
The first time I ever saw ash in a way that shook me to my core, the Everglades was on fire. I was like ten and at a park with my cousins. We were all riding our bikes,All of a sudden the sky got dark and a minute later, ash landed on my tongue. I remember thinking, wow this is the stuff that’s usually inside the barbecue. The acrid smell cranked up, too. We were inside the barbecue, but there was a strong breeze. It made no sense, a smell like fire and the air like a tornado wanted to start. We rode our bikes hard back to the picnic area where our family had set up. They screamed at us when they saw us, asked where we’d been, smacked us across the back of our heads and made us pile into the cars. We were fine. Nothing happened to us. Just another ashy Everglade summer.

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