That thunderstorm passing through yesterday afternoon lit 27 fires in Butte County, and some four hundred in the region. I smelled one of them just after midnight last night, riding the soft northern breeze. All night the scent of smoke pervaded the atmosphere, though the flames were too distant for their light to be seen from my yard where, oblivious, the crickets sang. All day today the water bombers passed over my house, rattling the windows like the thunder of that storm which had sent them aloft. They do not fly by night, and quiet has returned, but the smell of smoke lingers. Three fires are within a dozen miles of the house, but no more evacuations are apt to be imposed in the town. Still, best if the wind does not arise tonight.
by James Henry Leigh Hunt
(Translation of a Latin poem by Thomas Randolph)
We the fairies blithe and antic Of dimensions not gigantic, Though the moonshine mostly keep us, Oft in orchards frisk and peep us.
Stolen sweets are always sweeter; Stolen kisses much completer; Stolen looks are nice in chapels; Stolen, stolen be your apples.
When to bed the world are bobbing, Then’s the time for orchard robbing; Yet the fruit were scarce worth peeling Were it not for the stealing, stealing.