When I came home, I rode a bike along streets I didn’t recognize. The trees the city planted, the gingkos and the crimson maples, had filled in. Along the fences the Chinese elms sprayed up, weeds, from all the trimming. The houses were smaller. The hills were steeper. The telephone poles still towered above the new trees, their cables sagging. At one pole a wire angled out from the top and ran to the ground. A long time ago the wire had grown into a tree branch. When they cut that tree down, they cut on either side of the wire leaving the gray slice behind, still suspended, floating above me. Straddling my bike, I stodd there awhile keeping that disk of wood between me and the sun, trying to imagine the time it took for the tree to absorb the wire. The wire hasn’t let go, even now when the disease is dead.” Michael Martone, from “The War That Never Ends”, Double-Wide: Collected Fiction of Michael Martone.