Raw Arizona

When I was a boy, as clear as crystal, I saw a meteor split the NOLA sky, during the day without fanfare or witness, silent and incomprehensibly fast, two-stories above my head during summer camp. In the moment, I recall the other kids playing, innocent and oblivious to the fact that had the arc of attack been slightly different, all those millions of years ago when the meteor likely came hurdling our way, even by an inch, we would have all been vaporized. I too was playing in the brutal summer heat, but unlike the other kids in the moment looked up and saw the meteor. The object was both rock and fire, its tail trailing behind, shimmering flames whipping wildly in the wind. It was and still is, the closest to seeing God I have ever been. I recall the slackjawed expression of the teacher on duty as he, not believing his eyes, seeking confirmation in mine that we had, in fact, saw the meteor. We had. Going to Meteor Crater was, therefore, something of a spiritual hajj for me. Even if it wasn’t my meteor, somehow I wanted to graft meaning onto that moment, a bewildering and transformative moment, where I stopped being a citizen of Earth and became a citizen of the universe.