Autobiography - The Fire
[Back Story: Five days after my encounter with Jim Wilson, there was a fire of mysterious origin on my farm, a fire that destroyed a beautiful log cabin which I had built in a secluded part of my woods.]

Rachel, a neighbor, spotted the cabin fire from the road. She raced into the farmyard. Katherine and I went out to see what the excitement was.

We ran towards it. It was a pretty fireŚlittle cabin in the woods with flames dancing through its roof, oaks hovering over it in silhouette, hickories standing beside it like sentinels. Snow carpeted the woods and fields. It seemed like a storybook fire.

Suddenly, I was standing next to it. I heard no crackling. I felt no heat. When I had imagined my buildings burning, I had only seen the flames. I had never imagined the sound or the heat. The fire seemed peaceful, so silent and cool. I wanted to lean against the cabin, talk to it in an easy friendly way, ask how it felt. I thought about walking inside and watching the different things burn. If I could be with them, they would know how much I had appreciated them. Katherine ran back and forth. She screeched and warbled. Flames engulfed the roof.

I said, "it's all gone."
That felt right.
"It's all gone."
I looked at Rachel. "It's all gone," I told her.
Neighbors trickled in.
I told them, "it's gone. It's gone. It's gone..."
I shut off the gas. I leaned against the propane tank like I was talking over a fence with a friend. I gazed into the flames.
[End of Excerpt]

I told them, "it's gone. It's gone. It's gone..."

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