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Science of Survival Sep 25, 2018

Burnout

A single catastrophic blaze is neither the start or end of anyone's troubles. (David McNew/Getty)
brush fire

Maybe you saw the fire coming, maybe you didn’t. Maybe you were ready for it, maybe you weren’t. Maybe you did everything right. Maybe not. Maybe you just lost everything. Maybe that’s not even the worst of it. For this final episode of our four-part series investigating American wildfires, we asked fiction writer Joseph Jordan to imagine the experience of someone whose home has been destroyed by flames. He came up with a haunting story that captures our modern relationship with wildfire, in which a single catastrophic blaze is neither the start or end of anyone’s troubles.