The Quail Diaries–Notebook Reflection

24 08 2008

The fire zone and the quail seem far away right now. I miss the quail. Pieces of the fire zone will be making their way up here. A coyote skull from inside the burn (though this coyote was not killed by the fire, it had died some time ago), a few burnt stones and the notebook.

I mentioned the notebook early on. It is a thing, like the coyote skull, revealed by the burn. The notebook was not in the burned area (it would have turned to ash if it was), but in an area near the firefighters cut which I would never have found without the cut itself giving me access.

The notebook itself is water-damaged, crusted with dirt and hard to open; pages stick together when I try to turn them, coming apart and destroying anything that might have been written upon them. But, at least before I left, I was able to read two intact pages. As I read them, as I touched the pages I had a strong curiosity but also a sense of decay, of voyeurism and of something else.

Here is what I remember from the first page:

1972
Nogales
[drawing of a map of SW USA and Mexico, with Nogales the only city marked in]
….[Illegible] in case mom dad have to go to Mexico

and on another page

statue[sic]of limitations

Is it real or an elaborate fantasy? And why does it make me feel very sad?

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