Author Archives

Philip Connors works and writes in the U.S. / Mexico borderlands.

A Song for the River

VWPics via AP Images

Philip ConnorsA Song for the River | Cinco Puntos Press | September 2018 | 28 minutes (5,578 words)

By sheer dumb luck I happened to be facing the lightning when it struck: a livid filament that reappeared on my eyelids when I blinked. A blue puff of smoke bloomed skyward from the top of the ridge, superheated sap boiled to vapor in an instant. It dispersed on the breeze so quickly I wondered whether I had imagined it — whether, having become at last clinically pyromaniacal, I had willed the tree to catch fire and conjured the evidence to prove it.

I reached for the field glasses where they hung from a hook in the ceiling of the tower, an instinctual move made without looking away from the spot of the strike. I lifted the binoculars to my eyes, focused on the ridgeline. Waited. Remembered to breathe. Waited some more. Nothing amiss. Nothing new or different along the contour of the hill. Read more…