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I turn to the sound of loud cracking and see half a cottonwood tree falling as if in slow motion. Brenna and I are standing on another bench surrounded by water that’s driven into small whitecaps with each gust of wind. Our ears are filled with the fearsome sounds of rushing and cracking.


“We should go back,” I say to Brenna as I start to step off the bench back into the water.


“No!” she implores, clinging to me dramatically.


I am only too happy to remain a moment longer, holding her close in the primal role of protecting father.

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Taken on June 4, 2017