The Sky in California

By Sarah Henry

PROMPT—During Covid-19 ...

I walk on a beach with a tangerine sky above me. The sky could be right for a sunset during August. I think briefly about a fine day at a picnic when I toasted a view with a cup of rosé.


There’s a smell in the air like the product of a great explosion. A fire scorches trees as it speeds through the north. It’s the source of all this color. Smoke has risen. The acrid smell overcomes me as I walk along.


The sky looks a citrus shade since the inferno keeps blazing. A fault line runs across the state where thousands die from Covid. Hospital patients groan in bed. An earthquake may come soon, while

the sky’s inflamed.


Sarah Henry is retired from a newspaper. Her recent publications include Trouville Review, The Daily Drunk, The Beautiful Space, and Willows Wept Review. Sarah lives and writes in a small Pennsylvania town. She does not have a cat.